A.2 Try a different browser

Many problems we encounter with online tools and code templates turn out to be caused by our browser, not the tool or template itself. The most important advice we offer in this chapter is to always try a different browser to diagnose your problems. If you normally do all of your work in your favorite browser—such as Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Safari for Mac only—download a second browser for testing purposes. But please stop using the defunct Internet Explorer or Edge Legacy browsers, since Microsoft announced in 2020 that neither will be supported in the future.

In fact, you should always test your data visualization products in a second browser, where you are not logged in to an online account for the tool or service that created it, to check how it appears to regular users. On our computers, we installed a second browser, specifically for testing, and changed the settings to Never Remember browsing history so that it acts like a first-time user whenever we open it.

If you encounter any issues when using your favorite browser with digital tools or web services, give it a “hard refresh” to bypass any saved content in your cache and re-download the entire web page from the server, using one of these key combinations:

  • Ctrl + F5 (most Windows or Linux browsers)
  • Shift + Ctrl + R (Chromebook)
  • Command + Shift + R (Chrome or Firefox for Mac)
  • Option + Command + R (Safari for Mac)