Is there some mode where emacs fixes a small window with a list of opened buffers? This is what simpler editors have (kate,gedit,etc).
Here's an example from Kate:
In the left window there is a list of opened files. This is rather independent from the main editing window, while being connected. Some examples: I can maximize the whole set, it doesn't disappear if I split/unsplit the main editing windows.
(Edited for clarity)