What is the purpose of wiring pins 2 and 3 of a potentiometer together?

I build a lot of audio devices - amplifiers, effects processors etc. I've been doing it for about a year and learned a lot of principles. However one thing I still don't understand is wiring pots 1 and or 2 and 3 of a potentiometer together. How is it different from using only pins 1 and or 2 and 3?

simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

Rather than this (from here):

simulate this circuit

Please ignore resistance values, just examples.

• It makes the potentiometer into a variable resistance (circuit 1) rather than a voltage divider (circuit 2) Aug 26 '17 at 10:16
• @JImDearden That is more an explanation of why one connects a pot as a current limiter (circuit 1) vs a voltage divider (circuit 2). Once you've decided you want a current limiter, the reason for the decision to connect the wiper to the otherwise-unconnected end is as answered by Jasen. Aug 27 '17 at 3:38
• Yes @RickBrant, Jim is right - the second example is a little misleading as it is for a different function. Aug 27 '17 at 11:36
• @TCassa No. JlM claimed that the connection btw pins 2 and 3 "makes the potentiometer into a variable resistance". No, it does not do that! The pot is being used as a variable resistance in that circuit whether or not there's a connection btw pins 2 and 3. Aug 27 '17 at 20:45