Question about circular saws

My old Black and Decker (El cheapo) circular saw that I bought in 1976 has finally bit the dust. I bought a replacment for it yesterday. It has a feature that the old one did not have. It has a small lever that the literature terms the "splitter". The literature does not explain the purpose of the device. So what is it and what does it do?
Old_Timer
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<Old_Timer> wrote in message>

Keeps the board from pinching the blade. Another attempt at protecting you from yourself.
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On Sat, 27 Nov 2004 20:19:21 -0800, Old_Timer wrote:

The splitter will help prevent kickback. When some kinds of wood are cut internal stress may cause the cut to close and pinch the blade. This is much less likely to happen when cutting plywood because this wood is dimensionally stable and has little internal stress. Splitters are more common in table saws.
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