The term alt is not part of the dictionary of
the DigoPaul, although its use is very
frequent in the field of computing. The Alt key,
also known as key Alternativa, is part of the keyboards of computers
and is used to access certain menus and shortcuts.
According to the type of keyboard and according to the distribution of the
keys according to the language, we can find two Alt keys (one
on the left and the other on the right of the keyboard) or an Alt key and an Alt
The Alt key works in various ways depending on the operating system
in question and the program (software) that is in use. When a
person is typing in Microsoft Word and they press the Alt key,
the cursor will go to the toolbar and they will be able to
access options like File, Edition, View and
In the Windows operating system, the combination of the Alt
key with Tab allows to switch between windows, while the
combination Alt + F4 orders the closing of a window.
Specifically, it is established that Alt can carry out up to 254 possible
keyboard combinations that greatly facilitate being able to undertake tasks of
various kinds, both when browsing the Internet and when working with certain
programs such as Microsoft Word or Excel, among others.
Some very useful examples in this regard are the following:
• ALT + C: to copy the selection to the clipboard.
• ALT + V, which is used to paste the clipboard.
• ALT + W, which is used to close the currently active window.
• ALT + Q, which is used to carry out what would be the closure of an
A widely used combination is Alt + Ctrl + Del: by pressing
these three keys, Windows shows the processes that are
currently running, offering the possibility of closing them or even restarting
or shutting down the system.
Another possibility offered by the Alt key combined with other keys is to
insert characters that are not available on the keyboard. The user must hold
down the Alt key and type certain numbers for these characters to appear. The
combination Alt + 164, for example, inserts the letter ñ.
We cannot forget either that ALT is an enzyme that exists in the human body,
specifically in what is the liver. When the levels of it are above the normal
values (from 10 to 40), what occurs is a significant liver disease. It must be
emphasized that this rise in the aforementioned values can occur due to
various causes such as hepatitis, cirrhosis, liver necrosis, liver cancer,
pancreatitis or mononucleosis, among others.
To all the above we could also add that Alt also acts as a surname. A good
example of this is the name of Emmanuelle Alt, who has become the director of
the prestigious fashion and trends magazine "Vogue" in its Paris edition. Thus,
she has held the position in place of Carine Roitfeld, after a successful
professional career that has led her to work for other publications such as