Internet Explorer is getting a dev channel! Like Google's Chrome browser, those interested in trying out the latest bleeding-edge features in Internet Explorer will now have a developer version that they can use. The Internet Explorer Developer Channel offers numerous updates to the F12 developer tools, allowing those coding for the web to test their stuff on the latest and greatest version of Internet Explorer. Think of it as an opportunity to prepare for the future.
There are some visual tweaks here and there, but what's really important are the new developer tools. Console errors now get indicators on the icon bar, the F6 frame navigation tool has enhanced navigation tools, and CTRL + [ and CTRL + ] will let you go back and forward with the tools. You can even quickly access Document Mode from a drop-down menu at the top.
Console in Internet Explorer Developer Channel has also been improved, with time stamps, message clearing, more accurate autocomplete suggestions, and better cross-browser development behavior.
The DOM Explorer (the inspector that allows users to view the HTML and CSS that makes a website) has been improved with change bars in the computer styles pane. Users of the debugger will find they can now specify source maps, select multiple breakpoints, and set event breakpoints and tracepoints to be triggered by a specific event and not just code execution.
There are plenty of other changes for this first release of the Internet Explorer Developer Channel, and it's getting progressively further and further over our heads. This is not for the average Joe — dev channels are where companies test out new features, but they're not necessarily complete or even something that will see a public release.
Thankfully you can install the Internet Explorer Developer Channel right alongside the production release of Internet Explorer and not screw up your standard web experience. But it's still not for the Average Joe. Microsoft is promising that this is the first of many releases for the dev channel, and they are posting their roadmap for new features publicly.