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The Convert Selection To tool in the Edit palette lets you convert any type of object into another type of object with a single click. You can change a square into a light, a terrain into a sphere, or an infinite plane into a cone. Any transformations or materials you applied to the original object are preserved through the conversion. Just remember that if the original object is larger or smaller than the default size of the object it is being converted to, then the converted object will reflect the size change.
Conversions cannot be animated. You can't have a box that turns into a cone over time.
The Convert tool is above and to the right of the Edit Terrain/Object tool and looks like a double-headed arrow:
To convert an object to another type of object:
The image below shows a cube converted to a torus (left) and a 2D square converted to a pyramid (right). Since the cube Z-size is longer than the default torus Z-size, the converted torus is stretched to match the original cube size. The same with the pyramid which is squashed on the Z-axis to match the Z-axis of the 2D square.