You all know you can change from one text console to another using
ALT-Fx, where x is a number from 1 to 7 (or even higher, depending on your configuration).
What is not so widely known, is that you can also change consoles with a nifty little program called
chvt 3 (this switches to console 3)
There are several reasons why this utility can be quite handy: First, you might want to write shell/perl/whatever scripts which switch the consoles, which you can do now. Second, if something with your X11 keyboard configuration screws up (e.g. ALT-keys don't work anymore) or something similar, you can still switch to a console.