Firefox Extensions: undoclosetab

This is the third installment of my exploration of useful Firefox extensions

The Mozilla folks are proud of being the popularizers of tabbed browsing, which caused a bit of a revolution in browsing UI. Such a simple concept, but so effective… Tabbed browsing encourages the user to open a bunch of pages in their own tab for a branching thread of surfing.

Warning: stretched analogy coming

This is like how we used to read Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books in the 1980s. (“If you want to read about RFID chips in you Passport, turn to page 87. If you want to continue reading Slashdot, turn to page 134.”) In the old CYOA books,1 you could only follow as many branches as you had fingers to mark your pages (unless you cheated by dogearring or using bookmarks). If a finger slipped out, you had to backtrack a lot to find out where you left off.

A screenshot of the undoclosetab option

The same thing happens if you mistakenly close a tab. “Argh, I didn’t finish reading that article! Now where did I get that link from?” You can use the History or recreate your browsing, but Undo Close Tab is an easier solution. This simple extension allows you to right-click on any tab to re-open the most recently closed tab where you left off. It even keeps a history so you can undo the last 2-3 closes, for example. Be warned, though: the tab closure history is kept per-window so if you close the whole Firefox window you can’t undo.

So here’s a new motto for this extension: “Simple but effective, just like fingers.”

Next time: GeoURL

1 Personal note: one of my first programming projects was writing Choose-Your-Own-Adventures and MadLibs programs in BASIC on my friend’s Apple ][.