Mini me, mini you


The question has been submitted eight times in the last 24 hours: "How can I use my old Windows USB keyboard with this thing when there is no 'Option" or 'Apple' key?"

The question has been submitted eight times in the last 24 hours, probably due to the Mac Mini hitting the malls yesterday: "Hey, you're a Mac guy, how can I use my old Windows USB keyboard with this thing when there is no 'Option" or 'Apple' key?"

Fret not. The "Windows" key on your keyboard maps to the exact same spot as the 'command/Apple' key, and the "Alt" key maps to the same place as the Option key. Get it straight from the horse's mouth here . A few asides while we are on the subject:

- Don't call it an 'Apple' key, it is a "command' key. The command key (and the little cloverleaf symbol) have been standard keystroke modifiers since the control key was assigned to telecommunications functions when the internet was born in 1969. Until the release of the Macintosh in 1984, the command key was virtually always a re-mapped function key - you still see old VC-1404 and IBM380 terminals with the little peeling sticker on the F9 key.

- Our man Billy Gates decided to go with the control key for the command functions because he felt that there was no need for a personal computer to ever need network or communications functions - who would want to use a PC online? No one! Never!

- The fact that the 'Windows' key maps to the exact same keycode as the 'Apple' key, eleven years after the original, is a complete coincidence.

- The fact that Microsoft mapped the copy, cut, paste, print, undo, etc. control functions to the exact same command keys as the Mac (C, X, V, P, Z, etc.) is also a complete coincidence. Shame on you for thinking otherwise.

Posted: Sun - January 23, 2005 at 08:43 AM        


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