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No Tab Relocation Coming For Chrome 574

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the trust-us-we're-designers dept.
shaitand writes about Google disagreeing with the desire of Chrome users to put tabs under (rather than above) the location bar: "This issue has had overwhelming feedback from users with no notable dissent. But Google revealed their view on the community, saying that feedback and comments aren't considered, and today moved to silence dissent and lock comments on the issue. [A Chromium developer] says, 'Commenting on this bug has absolutely no effect at all on the likelihood that we are going to reconsider. So that people don't get their hopes up falsely, I'm locking this bug to additional comments.'"
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No Tab Relocation Coming For Chrome

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  • Use Firefox (Score:2, Insightful)

    by medlefsen (995255)

    Problem solved

    • If you have more than a handful of tabs, they belong on the side of the browser anyway. Chrome allows this. [lifehacker.com] Yeah, it doesn't change the fact that they're dicks, but it might help some people.
      • by geekoid (135745)

        What dicks?
        They made a decision, and made it clear that it's not something they are going to do.

        Being a dick they would have kept the thread alive, with no real intention of doing anything. Instead that made a design, and told their users; that is the right way to handle it, even if you wanted the feature.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:34PM (#37755730)

      The problem is so-called "UI designers". They have had a horrible impact on every software product they've gotten involved with, whether it's web sites, browsers, email clients, or even entire desktop environments (GNOME, I'm looking at you).

      Up until about 4 or 5 years ago, UIs of many of the major projects were designed and implemented by real programmers. These people made far more sensible trade-offs. They'd almost always choose practicality, productivity and usability over appearance. Now, this meant that there weren't as many rounded corners and gradients, but at least we had consistent UIs across applications, and they were reasonably efficient to use. We had proper menus, for instance, that made it very easy to see what an application could do.

      As we all know, the situation has changed. Now we have a lot of failed web designers not being able to find work designing web sites, so instead they've tried to get involved with app development. This has not gone well. The UIs of programs like Firefox, and all of GNOME 3, have been trashed by these people. They've even had some impact on commercial software, like the horrid UIs that recent versions of MS Office and IE have.

      We need to give these people the boot. It's one thing when they're making icons, but it's a completely different issue when they're deciding how the UI should be designed and implemented. None of them, across a wide range of software products, have been able to put together a usable UI. None of them.

      • But ... but ... the usability studies say so!

      • by AK Marc (707885) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:55PM (#37755978)
        There are entire degree programs on UI design. But a few users will demand that things be arranged the way they want. And for many things, the vocal minority gets a larger voice than the silent majority. Ignoring whining users isn't a bad thing. In fact, it shows a team dedicated to a unified UI vision that would be superior to UI by untrained users (you end up with the car from the Simpsons).
      • by Guspaz (556486) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:58PM (#37756032)

        Speaking as a programmer, programmers are not designers. They should not, unless they have demonstrated an ability to do so, design UIs. Letting programmers design UIs is how we get software like emacs or vi: greatly productive for a small number of advanced users, completely unusable by almost any computer user apart from those.

      • by I(rispee_I(reme (310391) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:59PM (#37756056) Journal

        In a similar vein, look at the reaction to google hiding the link to cached search results [google.com] in that stupid preview popup.

        Not only does it add an extra click and load time to every view of a cached page, it also breaks when scripting isn't given free reign.

      • by Sebastopol (189276) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:24PM (#37756380) Homepage

        I 100% disagree with you. Emphatically. Having been in the CAD development world for 20+ years, programmers are THE LAST PEOPLE who should be designing user interfaces. The vast majority of programmers have no idea what usability means to a general audience, and even worse sense of aesthetic. The worst offenders are programmers who think they know better without ever having met a customer.

        Now is an artless programmer better than a bad UI designer? That is debatable. But in my experience, the people who should develop the UI are the users and the trainers, together, and then provide a spec to the development team. With that feedback, even a mediocre programmer can make life a lot easier on the users.

        I know this sounds counter-intuitive, but the programmers rarely have any idea how to actually use the software. Especially when it is a large modular project, and each programmer may only have a slight idea what the entire application actually does. Sure the lead integrator has a clue, but they are usually way too busy to put any thought into a UI design, let alone collect feedback from the people who use it; they often delegate to another tertiary programmer (intern, co-op) who knows even less.

        I've seen this in 3D animation, CAD/CAM, medical software, automotive UI, factory and assembly line flow control, local government utilities control systems, etc.

      • by shish (588640) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @09:10PM (#37757306) Homepage

        at least we had consistent UIs across applications, and they were reasonably efficient to use

        Speaking as someone who used linux circa 2001, ahahahahahahahah haha ahahahah, hahaha, hah.

    • With tree-tabs! (Score:5, Informative)

      by Arker (91948) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:38PM (#37755794) Homepage

      Seriously, this extension is a must: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/tree-style-tab/ [mozilla.org]

      I have always liked google and I still do, but their browser is not for me.

      And to those saying fork chrome - better to fork Firefox I think. It's already pretty much feature-complete and just needs to be yanked out of the hands of Mozilla before they figure out how to screw it up like chrome.

      • by suutar (1860506)
        Oooh, I like this. Thanks for the pointer!
      • by mr_shifty (202071)

        and just needs to be yanked out of the hands of Mozilla before they figure out how to screw it up like chrome

        They're pretty close to doing just that. It's already almost too late. Unless someone forks FF 3.6.

    • Re:Use Firefox (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:46PM (#37755884)

      Firefox: Hey, guys, we're adding in a ton of new features! I mean, tons of them! Look how much memory we're using with all this random bullshit a couple guys with hideously esoteric tastes kept bugging us to add in!
      Nerds: Waaaah! Waaaah! We don't want features! It's too bloated and wastes too much memory! Why do we have to dig into config files and about:config to change this? Make it different! It physically hurts us somehow! Waaaaaah! Waaaaaah!
      Chrome: Hey, guys, we're cutting out all this bullshit and not kowtowing to random esoteric features 1% of our userbase wants! Look how lean our browser is!
      Nerds: Waaaah! Waaaah! We want useless bullshit features! It's too nonconfigurable! Why don't we have to dig into config files and about:config to change this? Make it different! It physically hurts us somehow! Waaaaaah! Waaaaaah!

      And this bitchfest right here has given me an entirely new appreciation for Firefox's and Google's devteams and some understanding of their arrogant attitudes if this is the sort of nonsense they have to deal with every day. Give the users an inch, they'll cry until you give them a mile, and then Chrome becomes just as bloated as Firefox just because a couple really loud nerds can't figure out how to install Opera.

    • And Chrome was just overtaking Firefox. Now much might this attitude set them back now?
      • by geekoid (135745)

        Nope. It's a good, more friendly, and safer browser. the tabs being above or below matters not to the vast majority of users.

  • This (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ackthpt (218170) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:24PM (#37755586) Homepage Journal

    This issue has had overwhelming feedback from users with no notable dissent. But Google revealed their view on the community, saying that feedback and comments aren't considered, and today moved to silence dissent and lock comments on the issue.

    This is what I don't like about Google, above all else. This is utterly contemptible behaviour and quite often why I find myself swearing at them as I try to find a work-around.

    Getting too big for their britches.

    • by billcopc (196330)

      If you are willing to trade speed and stability for greater customizability, there is always Firefox. Feature creep is what defines FF, so if Google doesn't want their browser to turn into a huge complicated mess, all I can do is agree with them.

      And for the record, I'm a Firefox user. As a developer, I would not want to live without Firebug and 3 dozen more add-ons. Chrome is a "consumer" browser, much like Safari and Opera, and there is nothing wrong with that.

      • by pspahn (1175617)

        Chrome is a "consumer" browser, much like Safari and Opera, and there is nothing wrong with that.

        I know that Firebug is really popular. I use it on occasion. Personally, I prefer GDT. I just find it a helluva lot more useful.

      • by shaitand (626655)

        Tab relocation isn't a feature that is going to slow down the browser or the fast js rendering engine that gives Chrome its edge. It's a basic usability feature.

      • by hedwards (940851)

        You act like Firefox is slow, the only times I have a problem with speed is when my internet connection stalls out, and that happens with other browsers as well. Even my laptop with dual core 1.6ghz processor I don't have any trouble with Firefox keeping up.

    • And this is why it's important to have several browsers around that all implement the same standards. This kind of competition is awesome, because a new browser is just a click away. Don't like Chrome? Go for IE or Firefox. Or the other half-dozen options that are available. Features that drive people away will either be killed, or result in the death of the browser.

      I really hope that three browsers will remain at the top of the heap for a long time. That makes it a lot harder for one to dictate how the web

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by mr_shifty (202071)

        Yeah, except all three are in a race to copy each other.

        For about the last two years, I've been in a continuous cycling between Opera, Firefox, Chrome.... back to Opera, back to Firefox, try Chrome again.

        Each one of them sucks in its own particular way, and all three suck in some of the same ways.

        I for one am getting sick to death of it.

        I don't have a browser that is my "favorite". I just have a list of "which browsers suck the least, in this order".

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by medv4380 (1604309)
      How is this that contemptible? It's not immoral, unethical, or even evil. It's a painter saying no I like my painting with purple grass, and I don't care that you want green grass in my painting because it's my painting. If you want green grass go to that Van Gogh guy. This isn't really a "bug" ether. It's an aesthetics request. It is behaving exactly as the designer wanted it to.
      • Re:This (Score:4, Insightful)

        by arth1 (260657) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:01PM (#37756096) Homepage Journal

        I'm sorry, but a browser is not a piece of art.
        It's like your carpenter telling you that your cabinet will have sliding doors; no matter how many orders he gets for hinged doors, he'll ignore it.
        Sure, he can do that, but he'll be considered a quirky craftsman at best, and a bad one at worst, and I don't think his carpentry business will be viable in the long run.

        • by mr_shifty (202071)

          Agreed.

          Or, since people prefer (*smirk*) car analogies, tabs on top in a browser is like a major car manufacturer deciding to replace the steering wheel with a tiller in all of its designs.

          And rejecting at least half of customers' cries of how awkward and cumbersome that is for steering the vehicle.

          It's a simple matter of a checkbox, in a browser, not a fricking vehicle redesign, in the case of a car.

          If it weren't for the lack of that simple checkbox in Chrome, that's the browser I'd be using right now, but

        • Re:This (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Capt. Skinny (969540) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @08:42PM (#37757114)

          It's not like that at all. Hiring a carpenter would be analogous to hiring a developer to write a custom web browser for you. If that were the case, then yes, customers would have reason to gripe. But Google's response is more like a cabinet manufacturer that offers its wares on the open market (a la Lowe's, Home Depot, etc.). Customers can gripe all they want, but if it's not a bespoke job then you have to choose from what's available.

          Even in a free market economy, consumer choice among vendors is limited to those vendors who choose to enter the market.

      • by shaitand (626655)

        It's a usability request. There are a number of situations, such as via a terminal server, where there is a screen element at the top of the screen. It also means moving the mouse further every time you switch tabs.

        This isn't evil per say. As you say, it is their design and their browser. But it is also pitched as being open and in the open source world it is a big deal (whether you are for or against) if a project is or is not community driven. A direct statement that community feedback isn't a considerati

      • by hedwards (940851)

        Yes, but Van Gogh only had to sell the painting once to one person, the folks at Chrome are wanting large numbers of people to use Chrome.

    • by Nick Ives (317)

      Yea, this is shocking behaviour.

      We should organise a class action to get a refund for the money we've spent on Chrome!

  • ...along with adblocking and noscript.
  • The more I read about Chrome's design process the more I hear, "it's the Google way or no way at all". I don't have a problem with the tabs being on the top, but it seems like it would be very easy to have an option where you want the tab bar. Several of the comments had valid use cases for why you'd want tabs under, but Google isn't interested in adding it as an option?

    • by Guspaz (556486)

      It's not so easy to do so. You're adding a ton of complexity with these kinds of things, because not only are you cluttering the options page with tiny little toggles, but you're causing a ton of extra code to try to handle the tab bar being in a different place, and you're breaking a whole bunch of assumptions all over the place (be it in code or themes) about where the tab bar is, what it is expected to look like, etc.

      For example, Google has been working on an option for quite some time to move the tab ba

  • There are quite a few alternative browsers out there. Although those who complain about this change will probably adapt to it in a week or so
  • by T-Mckenney (2008418) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:30PM (#37755680)
    Seriously, I'm not trying to be a dick here, but why in this world does this merit being front page? I find this to be on the level of simple bickering. This is more suited for a forum post or something a long that line.
  • Google is blatantly ignoring and degrading their users, Mozilla is forcing their users to install a new version more often which seems increasingly less stable, is everyone losing sight of the user?
    • by hedwards (940851)

      Good news is that Opera still cares about the users. The bad news is what the fuck is Opera?

  • Generally, the less you have to move the mouse, the better. If the tabs are between the text and URL bar, you save 60ish pixels of movement compared to Chrome's arrangement every time you touch a tab, which tends to be a lot. On the other hand, you type into the URL bar at least an order of magnitude less often.

    There are other misfeatures that Firefox copied from Chrome, but fortunately all of them can be reverted as an option. Chrome lacks that configurability.

    For example:
    * when I close the only tab, th

    • Re:Usability (Score:4, Insightful)

      by vgerclover (1186893) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:49PM (#37755914)

      Generally, the less you have to move the mouse, the better. If the tabs are between the text and URL bar, you save 60ish pixels of movement compared to Chrome's arrangement every time you touch a tab, which tends to be a lot. On the other hand, you type into the URL bar at least an order of magnitude less often.

      Yes, but you gain on the infinite height of a tab ending at the top of the screen. By having tabs on top with the window maximized, you have to only aim in the X axis and move the cursor up, instead of having to aim at a small area in XY, which is demonstrably harder and more time consuming.

      • by vux984 (928602)

        Yes, but you gain on the infinite height of a tab ending at the top of the screen.

        Only when the window is maximized, and you aren't running OSX...

        you have to only aim in the X axis and move the cursor up, instead of having to aim at a small area in XY, which is demonstrably harder and more time consuming.

        Even chrome maximized on windows... the top pixel or two aren't part of the tab, so you have to bring it back down a couple pixels. The amount of effort between that, and moving it down enough to get into t

    • by Zironic (1112127)

      "* special-cased hiding of "http://". What's the point of that? It doesn't do so to "https://", "ftp://" or "gopher://" URLs..."

      The reason would be that for 99% of the use cases of typing and sharing URL's, the HTTP is implied and unnecessary.

      Non HTTP addresses are however non-standard and as such need to be declared explicitly.

      • by KiloByte (825081)

        In my recent browsing history, 80% URLs are https.

        • by Zalbik (308903)

          In my recent browsing history, 80% URLs are https.

          Good for you. Unfortunately, the plural of anecdote is not data.

          I'm guessing that maybe, just maybe, Google might have a little better statistics on the browsing tendencies of users than you.

          By your logic, we should put the tabs right in the middle of the screen. After all, the user's mouse tends to be nearer the center of the screen rather than at the top, and the less mouse movement the better.

          In the vast majority of UI's represents a "folder" of concep

    • The reason why tabs are above the address bar is that it plainly makes more sense.

      Consider dialogs with tabbed pages in any OS/DE that you've seen - Windows, OS X, KDE, Gnome, they're all the same. Any widgets inside the tabbed pages control are those that "belong" to the currently selected page. Pages may duplicate widgets, but then the currently displayed widgets represents parameters that are in effect for that particular page. Any widgets outside the tabbed pages control are those that don't belong to a

    • by Guspaz (556486)

      The opposite is true. If you put the tabs at the top of the screen, the user can just jerk his mouse upwards, and the top of the screen will limit movement, making it quicker/easier to get to the tab bar. If you put the tabs below the address bar, now you need a precise movement to get there. Either you're going to overshoot it and move the mouse back down, or you're going to move the mouse slower to get the precision to stop there.

      For your first example, your browser isn't crashing, it's closing gracefully

  • Thats good for 'open' software, isnt it.

    no

    Commenting on this bug has absolutely no effect at all on the likelihood that we are going to reconsider. So that people don't get their hopes up falsely, I'm locking this bug to additional comments.'"

    i call these people assholes. because, thats the term used for that kind of behavior.

    anyway this assholery has just persuaded me not to use chrome ever. and i had some complains with firefox too.

    • Fork it, you are still free to do it. That's why it is still open software. Other than that, they have a vision on what the browser called Chrome should be, of which Chromium is the dev version.

      anyway this assholery has just persuaded me not to use chrome ever. and i had some complains with firefox too.

      You still have Opera, IE and Safari...

    • by Guspaz (556486)

      If you're going to refuse to use a web browser because they won't complicate their code base to satisfy an infinitesimally small number of users, I believe you'll find your solution here:

      http://gcc.gnu.org/ [gnu.org]

  • I would much rather they work on more outstanding bugs (not that this is even a bug--it really is working as intended) than spend time and effort on something as trivial as this. I prefer tabs on top, but my browser of choice (Safari on OS X, though I use Chrome elsewhere) doesn't do it that way. Would I like them to change it? Yes, but it won't happen. Apple briefly tried it with the Safari 4 beta, and reverted it back. Oh well.

    In Safari, I'm much more happy with new features like Reading List, Reader

  • I'd settle for being able to dock my bookmarks on the left edge of the window. The current menu-tree is cumbersome for me.

  • by SensitiveMale (155605) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @06:47PM (#37755894)

    on that specific bug tracker thread. Just because 99% of the people replying in THAT thread doesn't mean that 99% of all chrome users support that position.

    Personally, I love the tabs being on top because that is where I think they belong. Everything under the tab belongs under the tab. The address bar, navigation buttons, print button, actual web page, and everything else belongs to that specific page and should be under a tab. If the tabs are on the bottom then the tab's container holds the address bar, navigation buttons, print button and everything EXCEPT the actual web page. Silly.

    Tabs belong on the top. Now, I wouldn't care if google made an option to allow the user to move the tabs to the bottom.

    But to whine about google's "arrogance" by not doing what you want them to do shows real arrogance.

    • If the tabs are on the bottom then the tab's container holds the address bar, navigation buttons, print button and everything EXCEPT the actual web page. Silly.

      This issue isn't about allowing tabs to be placed at the bottom of the browser window; it's about allowing tabs to be placed below the address/location bar.

  • At the risk of sounding like a tool... Wow, so many people demanding the UI be changed just because they're used to of being a different way in another browser... I can appreciate the remote desktop argument & such but seriously... first world problem much?? It's a free browser - if you don't like it, stop complaining so much and use what you're used to...
  • I use Firefox, but I actually prefer the tabs above the address field. A tab is just a container and the address field contains information that's directly associated with the other content within the tab. The same goes for the back and forward buttons; their state is dependent on the browsing history of a specific tab.

    Still... giving people the option to switch shouldn't be something that's denied with a heavy fist. That's just poor PR.

  • So what? This is non-news. Chromium is open source. Chrome is a closed source build of Chromium. Google can do anything it wants with Chrome, and I see no problem with that. If you want to have tabs below the location bar, great! Write a patch to Chromium, or quit whining. The point of free software is that the user is free to change the software in any way that she sees fit.
  • While I disagree I respect them for having a vision and going for it, ignoring the inevitable complaining when they have a good reason for doing so.

    • by jo_ham (604554)

      Can I make a joke about people "holding it wrong"?

      I know of a similar large company that likes to do things a particular way, and it's *never* described as "being respected for having a vision and going for it", in fact it's almost universally reviled.

      Options are good things, usually.

  • by rrossman2 (844318) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:13PM (#37756260)

    But the tab on top is fine with me, in fact I prefer it. It just works better for me.

  • Can someone explain the pros and cons of this? Seems like troll food.

    • From what I can tell:

      Tabs on bottom:

      • shorter distance to go to get to tabs when moving mouse from page content
      • the way it used to be

      Tabs on top:

      • Page specific things such as address bar are visually under the tab, making it seem more connected to the page content, since the address bar and buttons do tab specific things
      • Not needed things like the address bar can be hidden without moving the tab bar placement such as when using things like the add-ons manager in firefox.
      • It's the way most browsers do it now.
  • Chrome OS (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:20PM (#37756342)

    Chrome isn't "just another window". It's an operating system prototype. At the very top of your screen is your application manager. Makes sense.

  • Leave my tabs where they are, please. If you want to use Firefox then use Firefox.

  • Issues like this are stupid. Projects ought to adhere to design principles. There is a clear rationale for why the tabs are on top and not below the address bar; chrome developers made this design choice deliberately since the very beginning. The same goes with other aspects of chrome's design.

    I can understand that if chrome is not a suitable browser for your personal use, that you would prefer to use a different browser instead, but what I don't understand is why all the bitterness and hostility? That'

  • This issue is a perfect example of the gap between Apple and Droid. You people are flaming each other about a fairly small usability feature. This is right up there with complaining about not being able to change icons. This is why Droid is a mess right now (from bugs, to security, to low customer satisfaction) and iOS is dominating. I know giving up software flexibility is the worst sin ever, but sometimes you need to just except small things you can't change (like the size of your caps lock key or the

  • by Cyko_01 (1092499) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:36PM (#37756552) Homepage
    some Google hate on Slashdot! I thought this day would never come.
  • by DragonWriter (970822) on Tuesday October 18, 2011 @07:54PM (#37756712)

    From the last comment (#188) posted to the bug by a Googler:

    One more note here for the benefit of Slashdot (hi!) and anyone else who's not clear on this issue or how our bug tracker works.

    We made the decision not to make this configurable long, long ago, even before we WontFixed this bug in comment 59 (over a year ago itself). Accordingly the bug is closed because that reflects not only our current stance but the position we've had for a very long time.

    This does not mean either that we will never listen to user feedback, or that we used to be listening on this bug but decided to stop. The issue is that our bug tracker is specifically about tracking what we consider to be bugs, not a general forum for feedback and debate on our design decisions. That means that in general (this bug included), we can and will decide not to address particular requests, and when we do, commenting on the closed bug is not going to make us change our minds. On the contrary, we will not hesitate to lock things down in the bug tracker precisely to prevent things from spiraling out of control or misleading people into sharing their feedback here instead of where it's helpful

    We have other venues such as the chromium-discuss mailing list and our feedback forums where it is appropriate to share your opinions. The forums are a place where we are set up to track user feedback and surface the most critical issues to the team without impacting the productivity of us developers who are busy trying to make Chrome work better.

    We don't promise we'll change our minds, but we're not hostile to you expressing your point of view. This is just not the correct forum to do so.

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