Tabbed Everything

Tabbed Everything

I remember the first time I used a browser with tabs – it was aught 2 or so – and I remember almost exploding with excitement. You mean they’re windows all in one window! Holy crap! Firefox turned me on to a world I wanted to know, a world of organization and less desktop clutter, a world that sadly is hard to find in a windowed environment.

Now I find myself wanting tabbed everything. I want to know that things are there behind the things I’m doing without the things that I’m not doing getting in the way, get it?

Luckily, a lot of software in recent times has fulfilled my unquenchable desire for tabs. The web-browser is where the tab has really flourished. Every browser these days has tabs (even IE is jumping on the bandwagon, albeit 3 years after Safari). Browsers are the perfect use of tabs because of the way the typical browser user interface is set up. All the controls are at the top and the main focus [should] always be the actually browser view. Since the browser view usually takes up most of the screen it sucks to be switching between windows and constantly loosing focus without ever knowing what you have open. Safari and Camino really do this the best, by having close buttons on each tab. Safari gives you a quick kick to the junk if you click the close window button by accident. Unlike Firefox or Camino, it doesn’t warn you not to be an idiot. (Unless you’ve installed Taboo – and why haven’t you?)

Beyond browsers, tabs are finally being implemented for the good of man. TextMate and other text/code editors are all using tabs. Transmit has tabs for FTP connections. iTerm has tabs for shell/terminal windows.

I’m recently getting pissed off at application that don’t have tabs. I want tabbed Mail! I know its against the paradigm of Mail UI but I want the compose window to be embedded in the reading view. Why should I have to keep forgetting that I have an open half typed letter sitting behind my Inbox?

What I find more interesting is tabs on the operating system level. Desktop Manager is really like have whole desktop tabs. I used it for a while and found it really great for my laptop, where screen real-estate is limited, and I could switch between groups of windows in one fell swoop. It works well but I feel like this functionality should be built into OS X/Expose. Its been built into Linux desktops for years. I want some keystroke to change my environment quickly and easily so that I can keep work and play separate (and not have to be constantly confronted with my email or news-reader when Im really trying to switch between TextMate and a browser preview).

Gimme more tabs!

One Response to “Tabbed Everything”

[…] Tabbed Finder! Its what I’ve always wanted. I care way less about Boot Camp, since I don’t have an Intel. I’m all about UI improvements. Bring ‘em on, Stevie! […]


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