The Shiftkey FAQ - Version 0.001
by Alan Meiss
Unleash the Power of Shift!
Q. My shift keys have little arrows on them. Does that mean the *real*
shift keys are located above them, and these keys are just little signs to
point them out?
A. Nope, they're the Real McCoy. The little arrows mean "up", as in "look
up at the screen". Your keyboard is telling you to learn to touch type and
quit staring at your fingers.
Q. What happens if I press both shift keys?
A. Even bigger letters may show up on your screen. You should not use this
feature, however, because these letters are also brighter, and may cause
Screen Burn-In, which would be particularly embarrassing if you were typing
something naughty at the time. You might consider obtaining the author's
Shift Key Burn-In Protector program for only $139.95. Or you might not,
it's your computer, but don't say I didn't warn you.
q. my religion prohibits the use of shift keys. how can i type capital
letters and punctuation
A. Discuss alternatives to the shift key with your spiritual advisor.
Perhaps your deity would not be angered by repeated use of the Caps Lock
key, or maybe you can retain a consultant to depress the shift for you. You
might also consider replacing punctuation marks that require the use of
shift keys with lower case expressions; replace ? with "huh" and ! with
Q> I PRESSED SHIFT AND IT"S STUCK DOWN NOW>
A. Do small children with a fondness for peanut butter use your keyboard
frequently? If so, you may want to clean it off for more reliable
operation. First, disconnect your keyboard by gripping each of its ends
firmly and pulling as hard as you can. Next, immerse the keyboard in warm
water and scrub thoroughly with your favorite lemon-scented detergent and
lots of steel wool. Finally, you need to dry the keyboard. Either dry it to
touch with a handheld blowdryer, or place it it the dryer for not less than
60 minutes. Be sure to clean the lint screen when you are finished.
Q. Why are there are no "shift" keys on my keyboard, but there are two keys
A. Again, you may want to consider cleaning your keyboard, and washing your
hands more frequently for that matter.
Q. Are there shift keys on my Macintosh?
A. Yes, although instead of the notation "shift", the key may be labelled
with an excited Mac face, something like :O . Press this key to use shift,
and be thankful you're using a friendly Mac instead of a mean old PC with
all them confusin' words 'n stuff on it.
Q. I'm sick of pushing the shift key every single time I want big letters.
Is there any other way to do this?
A. This is the Modern Age of Convenience, and you may be able to activate
the shift key merely with the power of your voice! Check to see whether
your computer is equippped with speech-recognition equipment by saying the
word "shift" very clearly and slowly into its speaker. Then watch the
keyboard closely to see if the Shift key moves down. Note that you may have
to repeat this action several times to "train" the computer to recognize
your voice before the feature works reliably.
Q. There are two shift keys, which should I use?
A. Avoid unnecessary wear on either shift key by alternating between the
two. Keep track of your usage of each key so that you press them in equal
amounts. Your keyboard may be equipped with a small notepad; you should use
this to make little tally marks in two columns for each time you shift.
Remember, it's better to go to a little trouble than wind up with a broken
Q. Why are the shift keys bigger than the other keys?
A. They aren't. This is simply an optical illusion. Just as the moon
appears much larger when it is close to the horizon, your shift keys look
larger because of their proximity to other keys. To verify this, go out in
a large field at night with your keyboard, place it in an upright position,
and view it from a distance of 200 yards. Sure enough, the keys all look
the same size!
Q. If I press the shift key at the wrong time, or too many times, will my
A. No. Well, generally no. Not unless you are using a NEC laptop. Or vt100
terminal emulation. But even then, hardly ever. Really, don't worry about
it. Forget I mentioned it. Just type softly. Move along, next question.
Q. No matter what I do, the shift key just doesn't seem to work. What's
A. Have you ever considered that the problem may not be your keyboard, the
problem may be YOU? Perhaps God Himself has suspended the operation of
these keys to send you a Message that you have strayed from the path of
righteousness. Use this as an opportunity to reflect on your life. Before
rushing blindly ahead with a lot of shifting, consult the spiritual advisor
of your choice for help in dealing with any unresolved issues in your
relationship with the Almighty.