The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has drafted the Indexed Database API, a proposed standard for a set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that could be used to store structured content online. The Indexed Database API will supply an interface that Web application developers can use to make the user's browser store database content offline, says W3C's Philippe Le Hegaret. Web applications can use the APIs to store copies of data in the browser itself. "The database engine will be directly in the browser," Le Hegaret says.
If browser makers adopt the standard, data storage can be controlled by the browsers rather than by individual applications. The W3C hopes the Indexed Database API will help redefine the Web from being a platform for viewing static content into one for hosting data-rich, Internet-based applications.
The W3C is developing other APIs for offline storage in conjunction with the Indexed Database API, such as Web Storage, which is not intended for large amounts of data; and Web SQL Database, which is confined to storing SQL-formatted data.
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