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I thought this was always the point of Gears, as a stopgap for HTML5 features until browsers supported them all. But I don't really see why they need Gears on Firefox for local storage for example, when Firefox has had a local storage API since version 2.

See https://developer.mozilla.org/en/DOM/Storage

Of course, I am not really a web developer or a Google employee so I probably don't have the whole picture.

Oh, I guess the Firefox 2 storage isn't actually HTML5 storage, according to http://www.quirksmode.org/dom/html5.html#localstorage . But then, I don't quite understand where that lies in relation to HTML5.

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