I am now using Internet Explorer 8 at work (corporate policy), and I noticed that sometimes I cannot find the tabs I open with “open link in new tab”. Firefox always puts new tabs in the right end of the page. This is not very convenient if you have many tabs, but at least I know where to find it.
IE authors appearantly decided to improve on that. A new tab will open immediately to the right of the current tab. But there is a catch. If I open several links in rapid succession, they will appear in the order I open them. I.e.
CURRENT_TAB | LINK1 | LINK2 | LINK3
However, if I pause a little before opening the fourth link, it will appear immediately to the right of the current tab, like this:
CURRENT_TAB | LINK4 | LINK1 | LINK2 | LINK3
It all depends on time between the opening of two links. If I open the links quickly enough one after the other, new link will go to the right of the previous link. If I am not quick enough, new link will go to the right of the current tab.
Since, unlike my computer, I do not have a built-in clock that measures “quickness”, the position of the opened link becomes pretty much random. This is especially annoying if you have many tabs, much more annoying the Firefox. At least it is consistent.
I started with a feeling of general dissatisfaction, such as “why sometimes I cannot find my tabs?”, until I finally took time to reverse engineer their approach.
I imagine IE design team had countless meetings on the subject and this is the compromise solution they arrived to. Frankly, it’s a mess. If I could, I would disable this feature and always have it open new link at the same place, no timers invovled. This way, I at least would no where my tabs went.