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The spatiotemporal development of discharges in uniform field gaps has been studied for many years in order to understand the physical mechanisms of breakdown. These studies have shown that a glow discharge structure is produced as an intermediate stage in the breakdown process which finally leads to the formation of a filamentary arc. Recently these pulsed or transient glow discharges have been used to pump a wide variety of gas lasers including CO2 lasers and rare gas-halide excimer lasers. Preionization of the gas volume is usually used to Â¿stabilizeÂ¿ these laser glow discharges, i.e. to increase the duration and/or energy density of the pulsed glow discharge and delay the onset of arc formation. Recent experimental work also has shown that the corona discharges which are observed in point-plane gaps have a glow discharge-like structure. These two types of discharges are compared and some speculations are offered about the Â¿corona stabilizationÂ¿ process in point-plane gaps and its relationship to arc formation in uniform field gaps.