OK, after reading this 8 page thread in its entirety, this is what I have to say. (part of me just doesn't want to get involved, but the other part of me says that after 8 pages, I should say something
When Safari came out, and I first heard the tabs v. no tabs argument, I was confused. I had never heard anyone speak out against tabs before that, and I couldn't really see what anyone had against them. I read the arguments, and sort of began to see the point. After reading this whole thread, I can't say I entirely disagree with Eugene and his camp. Tabs really don't seem to be the best solution to a problem (which, btw, I do think exists). But they may be the best solution we have.
I hate having multiple browser windows open. In fact, until I started using Safari, I don't think I ever really worked with multiple browser windows. The thing is, Chimera got me so used to dealing with multiple sites at once (because of tabs), that I couldn't go back to "serial browsing" as its been dubbed. Now, I suppose that using multiple windows as opposed to multiple tabs wouldn't be so bad except for a few things. I browse with the window taking up the whole screen. That means tha when I open a new browser window in Safari, the right edge of it is offscreen. That is no good, because then I have to move the window over to scroll down, to see al of its content, etc. This could be fixed, by not only automatically moving new windows over, but resizing them as well, so that they were entirely onscreen. Also, when I hold cmd and shift, the message in the status bar says "Open...in a new window behind the current window" but when I cmd-shift-click a link, where does the new window open? That's right, in front of the current window. Now, I know that both these things are "bugs" (or at least just a fluke for me, since I haven't heard anyone else complain aboutthe cmd-shift-click thing) which can be fixed, but they are still things that are making me want tabs right now.
In answer to the oft-made objection that tabs truncate page names. A truncated page name still gives me a lot more information than a window which is completely hidden (page name and all) behind another window. In fact, not only can I not tell what is in the window, I may not even realize the window is there. That's helpful. Give me truncated page names any day.
Also, I am glad that some people have finally realized that having tabs implemented does not restrict you from using multiple windows. While some of the arguments against tabs are valid, even good, arguments, things like "I can't drag and drop between tabs" really don't hold a lot of water. Just open two windows if you want two windows. Anyway, that's been covered, moving on...
As far as tabbed browsing creating an MDI, that would require web pages being documents, which I would argue they are not (at least not in the traditional sense) (seems kind fo funny to say traditional senes, since even "documents in the traditional sense" as I mean it, that is computer documents, are not really documents in the traditional sense. But I diverge). But there have been whole books written on whether web pages are documents, applications, somewhere in between, etc. We are not going to resolve that debate here.
In closing (I hope) Itend to agree that tabs are not necessarily a good thing from a UI standpoint. That doesn't stop me from wanting them. They improve my workflow, they make browsing more organized, etc. (One of my most common uses of tabs is at AI. Since external links always open in a new window, I instead have them load in new tabs in the background while I continue reading the thread and flip through them once they've loaded). Maybe tabs will be bad for the UI in the long run, I really can't say. But I'm going to be selfishly happy if/when we get them in Safari. Maybe there is a better way to implement a similar feature. If there is, Apple will probably find it; that's what they're good at. But it's going to take a while to find. So give us tabs now, and swap it for the new method come v. 2.0 (I can already feel the heat of the flames). As for complaints about the "current" implementation of Safari tabs: criticizing a hidden feature in an unreleased beta is really lame. I am sure things will have been cleaned up by the time tabs go public.
So, finally (really this time), Eugene, you've convinced me. Tabs are not good.
But I still want them.
(maybe I'm just selfish)