I want to share my gear and build with friends, is there any way of viewing my characters outside the game?
It's not possible as yet.
They have plans for Character Profiles, similar to World of Warcraft's Armory. http://us.battle.net/d3/en/blog/5406050/Character_Profiles_Coming_Soon-5_11_2012
Also, http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/5271598804 details Blizzard's plan for an API to get Diablo 3 information.