I’m not a big fan of Firefox’s latest experimental feature “Tab Candy” for a couple of reasons.

First, I don’t think that having an application reinvent its own window management system is a step in the direction of better usability. Whatever operating system you are using, it’s already difficult to navigate through windows efficiently as it is, but after some time, you become reasonably proficient with it. And now, you find yourself having to learn yet another window management paradigm, with shortcuts that are by definition different from the ones you are used on the desktop, and a space and interaction logic that is going to be subtly different from the OS.

Second, I tend to use the keyboard to select my windows a lot more than the mouse, so functionalites like Exposé are of no use to me. Tab Candy seems to be no different.

What I really need is an extension that lets me switch to a tab by typing a few letters from either its title or its content. Just now, as I was starting to write this entry, I found myself having to find the article I linked above. I have currently about ten Firefox windows open and each of them has anywhere between one and ten tabs. Finding the correct window required a few Alt-Tab and quite a few Alt-~. And even then, the correct window popped up on my screen several times but I missed it because the tab I was looking for was the fourth in in a group of ten.

What would have been ideal: a text box where I can type “candy” and a drop down containing all the tabs that match the string I just type.

I’m aware of a few Chrome extensions that do this but all of them open a new window when you select the tab, instead of just taking you to the existing one, which defeats the purpose of the idea since it loads the page again and loses the position you were last reading.

Please let me know if you know of any extension that accomplishes what I’m looking for (ideally on Firefox).