With all the buzz and excitement around new technologies such as Google Glass, the iPhone 5 and Cloud Computing, little attention has been paid to the outlier of the technology world: Internet Explorer 10. This dinosaur of IT has been around forever (yes, they’ve made 9 other versions of it) but has managed to miss the spotlight despite some really good enhancements. Yeah, I know, it’s just another version of a big, fat browser, but since its release several months ago, it has been recognized by many folks as the best iteration of the most popular browser on the market. If you are old enough to remember the days when people had to actually pay for Internet browsers and ordered them on CDs, then you’ll be able to appreciate just how far the browser has evolved.

But herein lies the problem: Microsoft, Google and others release major browsers every two years or so. When a website is re-designed, such as www.Network1Consulting.com, it is built for the most common browsers of the day. Each browser (IE, Chrome, Mozilla, etc.) and version of a browser interprets the computer code from each website differently. Usually there are no compatibility problems but occasionally the formatting will not come across properly and what is displayed in the browser doesn’t line up or can be totally out of place. This can create a real headache and makes it very difficult to view a website. If you are a paralegal working for a law firm, you have probably run into this problem when viewing county court documents such as real estate deeds and plats. Although the government does a fantastic job of running our healthcare system, balancing its budget and being fair to Tea Party non-profits applying for tax exempt status (not!), it has trouble keeping up with technology. A website designed in the 1990s is going to be problematic when being viewed by a browser that is 15 years newer. And there are plenty of websites that do not get updated regularly.

So that brings us back to IE 10. If you happen upon a website that doesn’t appear to be formatted, there is a good chance that it hasn’t been updated to be compatible with IE 10. There is a feature called “Compatibility Mode” in IE that lets a website be viewed as if IE9 (or 8 or 7) were installed. This really cleans up a lot of the mess.

To view a website in compatibility mode, open IE 10 then press F12. A window at the bottom of the screen pops up and one of the menu options is BROWSER MODE. Hover over that option and you’ll get a pull down with the choice of IE 9 thru IE 7. Once you select a different mode, you can reload the page in the “new” IE version. Pretty handy.

N! IE10 has several other neat features but this one takes the top prize in my book. It’s definitely worth the upgrade. So the next time you come across a site that appears garbled, try out IE 10’s Compatibility Mode.

Network 1  Consulting is a 15-year-old, IT Support company in Atlanta, GA. We become – or augment – the IT department for professional services companies: law firms, medical practices and financial services firms. Our IT experts can fix computers – but what our clients really value are the industry-specific best practices we bring to their firms. This is especially important with technology, along with regulations and cyber threats, changing so rapidly. We take a proactive approach to helping our clients use technology to gain and keep their competitive advantage. 

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