Aren't most of the mainstream browsers blocking new windows from opening up by default these days? Power of the link vs. power of the browser/user?
Is it really necessary to open outbound links (or internal ones, for that matter) in a new window? I'd like to say 'no' from a usability standpoint, especially if it's set as a default to block them from opening.
Should it affect one's ranking in SERP's? Maybe it should...
A bit of CSS should be able to change the cursor for you, Kaled. Which other cursor do you suggest?
In my own code, yes but on the internet as a whole I would have to write a browser extension. As for what cursor, none of the existing standard cursors would do so it would have to be a custom cursor - maybe the standard hand with a rectangle and a plus sign in it.
When you think about it, it's pretty silly that you can see the target url of a standard link by looking at the status bar but there is no way to tell if it will open in a new window (or tab).
I'm totally with you, kaled. So many times I'm using a hub page that links out to a lot of different resources. I value it when the website makes sure they open in a new window, but I would also appreciate some clue in the interface.