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Special Characters / Key finder
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NDBounce
Senior User
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Webster, NY, USA
Status: Offline
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Mar 22, 2009, 03:40 PM
 
Does anyone know of an app (preferably freeware) that allows me to see all the characters of a font, and the keystrokes necessary to get any specific character to appear?

Unfortunately I am not certain of the name of what I am looking for, but something that would allow me to see an "e" with an accent mark (é) or a U with those two dots over it (ü). Right now I have to guess what key combinations to use, and that is very time consuming when citing foreign language documents.

Thank you,

O
B unce!
     
slugslugslug
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Durham, NC
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Mar 22, 2009, 03:51 PM
 
Keyboard Viewer and Character Palette are built into the OS. Easiest way to see them is to turn on the input menu via the International Preference Pane.

Open System Preferences, choose International, then click the Input Menu tab. At the bottom of the window, check "Show input menu in menu bar". Then, from the top of the list, turn on Keyboard Viewer and Character Palette.

The former will be useful most of the time. When you show it via your newly-activated input menu, it shows the keyboard. Press a option, shift, or both, and it shows you what gets typed. Pretty straightforward.

Oh, except accents, but they become simple after a few tries. Hold down option and you'll see some keys get highlighted in orange. Those will give you an accent first, and then if you type a compatible letter, you get it with the accent in question. So option-e, then e, gives you é. It's pretty intuitive, so anything you use often will become second nature after a while, far better than those 4-digit alt codes in Windows.
     
NDBounce  (op)
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Webster, NY, USA
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Mar 22, 2009, 04:47 PM
 
Thanks, that gave me what I was looking for! I feel like an idiot not knowing it was built into the OS.
     
slugslugslug
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Durham, NC
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Mar 22, 2009, 08:37 PM
 
Eh, don't. It's a weird little floating window that isn't even officially an app, so it's pretty hard to find. Especially if you want to type things like ≤ or ≠ or ; it probably wouldn't occur to you to search help for "international".
     
   
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