Sonorous Shortcuts

Today I tried to use a keyboard shortcut in one program that I often use in another. It didn't work. Well, the shortcut did work. It did something else instead of what I wanted it to do. I never noticed this until now, when I use the shortcut more often than I once did before.

This reminds me of guitar tunings. With a particular tuning, you get used to a way of navigating the fretboard — scales, chord shapes, the like. When you play with a tuning that you're unfamiliar with, that ease you were used to becomes hindered. Try to play a pleasant chord like you used to and it now sounds cacophonous. Not to say one tuning is better than the other. You just navigate it differently and have new sonorities available.

I suppose keyboard shortcuts could be approached no differently. Each program could be viewed as a different tuning by which you navigate the fretboard of the computer that is the keyboard.

Then again, programs (and OS's for that matter) are extensible far beyond the guitar. That is where another approach arises — just change the keyboard shortcut in that one program to match what you're used to. The computer becomes the universal tuner by which each program adjusts itself.

Is one way better than the other? A silly question. It's more compelling to think of the two in dialogue — the universal tuner versus each program with its own tuning.