Today Google announced an offline feature for Google Documents. Now Google Docs users can work on documents without being connected to the Internet. The only reason I haven't fully committed to using Google Docs for all of my word processing needs is the need to be online to edit my work. With the new offline feature of Google Documents I will probably be doing all of my word processing on Google Docs.
Applications for Educators
One of the problems I frequently hear from teachers trying to use collaborative web tools in the classroom is concern about Internet connectivity. Nothing is more frustrating than having a great lesson plan involving an Internet resource to go to plan "B" because your school's Internet connection is too slow or dead. Now with Google Documents' offline feature if you plan to have your students work collaboratively with a document, spreadsheet, or presentation your students can keep working even if your Internet connection is lost.
Here is Google's explanation of their new offline feature.
Here is Robert Scoble interviewing Ken Norton, Product Manager at Google, about the new Google Docs offline feature.