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How do I modify a single alt+key character or symbol?

1506 Views 19 Replies Latest reply: Jan 19, 2013 9:01 AM by Frederick0245 RSS
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jamfromsanmateo Calculating status...
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Sep 6, 2012 11:19 PM

I need to modify a keyboard alternate character.  For example, I want get the ♭(Musical Flat Symbol) by pressing Alt + Shift + 3.  Currently, I see that Alt+ Key combination creates the ‹ symbol (which I may never use).

 

I see older posts re: similar needs, but all Solutions imply I must use Character viewer / favorites to grab my ♭ each time I want to insert it or copy and paste repeatedly.  Both methods require too many steps each for each insertion.  Other posts suggest using an external 'Special Fonts Software Download' to Modify the Alt+ Keys.  That sounds potentially dangerous.  Is there an actual Simple Apple Solution to this that I'm missing?  - Thanks

OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1)
  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    This example I am using Pages:  Select Edit, Special Characters, first you need to place your Music symbols in the Special Characters Left panel (This is a One-off) to do this select this iCon Music.jpg  and check the ones you need from the list, once you have done that you only need to select Music from the left panal then Click Drag and Drop your symbol onto your document.

  • Don Archibald Level 10 Level 10 (101,125 points)

    It actually is easy, almost too easy.

     

    Have the Character Viewer open and your musical note figure selected.

     

    Then go to System Preferences > Language & Text > Text.

     

    Under the list on the left of that window, click the + button.

     

    For the first box (in the Replace column) press the key combo Option-Shift-3 and it should show the ‹ character.

     

    Click the box to the right of that one, the one in the "With" colimn. After a moment it should open as ready. Then go to Character Viewer screen (do not make it active) and double-click the musical note character. It should appear in the second box in the prefs window.

     

    Make sure that entry line in the prefs window is checkmarked, then close it and test.

     

    Note - when using Character Viewer, it is not necessary to drag-and-drop the wanted character into your document. A double-click is sufficient.

  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    jamfromsanmateo I had a rethink on this and I believe it will do all you want:  Open your Pages document, select Fonts, then select Arial Unicode MS as your font then when you want the Flat Symbol hold the Command [alt] key while you type D+266D the resulting unicode will give you what you want

  • Don Archibald Level 10 Level 10 (101,125 points)

    I forgot to add - the replacement of the ‹ character with the musical note character won't appear until you type the next character. This can be a space, etc.

  • Tom Gewecke Level 9 Level 9 (70,815 points)

    Bodycalming wrote:

     

    Open your Pages document, select Fonts, then select Arial Unicode MS as your font then when you want the Flat Symbol hold the Command [alt] key while you type D+266D the resulting unicode will give you what you want

     

    That's just all wrong.  To do this you have to first go to system preferences to activate and switch to the Unicode Hex keyboard layout, then hold the Option/alt key down and type 266D.  No need to choose any font.

  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    Wow!  What do you mean?  That's just all wrong!  With Arial Unicode MS as the default font the Music Teacher can type what they want, until they want to show the Flat Symbol.  They simply hold the Command [alt] Key and type as you see it now D+266D and not as you put it 266D The Arial Unicode MS font is already in the Font Book

     

    Below is what you get in any size you want.

     

     

  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    Please accept my apologies.  I should have typed Option [alt] instead of Command [alt]

  • Tom Gewecke Level 9 Level 9 (70,815 points)

    When I hold the option/alt key and type D+266D, I just get a sequence of special characters.  I don't understand how you could get anything else.

     

    Screen Shot 2012-09-07 at 5.13.05 PM.png

  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    So sorry guys, I have been going round in circles on this one, with the result I somehow lost my way, please forgive me.

     

    In System Preferences select Language & Text you need to setup a new Input source like this.. UniKeyboard.jpg

    So I have now added the Unicode Hex Input.  When I open Pages my default input source is this..British.jpg

    Now select your input source so it looks like this....

    NonBritish.jpg

    The input device will still give you all your 'Normal' characters but with the addition of Unicode Characters..

     

    Try these while holding the Option Key

     

    ♪                266A eighth note

    ♫         266B beamed eighth notes

             266C beamed sixteenth notes

             266D music flat sign

             266E music natural sign

             266F music sharp sign

     

    My most sincere apologies once again for my confusion!!

  • Tom Gewecke Level 9 Level 9 (70,815 points)

    Bodycalming wrote:

     

     

    Now select your input source so it looks like this....

    NonBritish.jpg

    The input device will still give you all your 'Normal' characters but with the addition of Unicode Characters..

     

     

    Unfortunately with the Unicode Hex layout you do not have access to any of the option/alt and option/alt + shift shortcuts for typing special characters which are available on the standard layout.  Many people use these regularly for easily typing accented letters, currency and other symbols (e.g. é, £, €, ™, ¢, ®, ©, ‰, °)

  • Bodycalming Level 3 Level 3 (705 points)

    The soul purpose of going the Unicode route was because my original suggestion of adding a Music folder in the left panel of the built-in Special Characters then simply picking-up the Flat symbol then Click It Drag It Drop It, onto the document, was politely rejected with the words " Your Workaround is creative, clever, and Almost Okay".  Sadly this did not suit the Music Teacher, due to the lack of screen real estate on a 13" screen, becauce second window was just too much!

     

    As I understood it, the user only wanted to add Music symbols to a document.  I am fully aware that there are restrictions when using a Unicode Hex Input for general usage but it really is very easly to switch back and forth from one input device when required.

  • Tom Gewecke Level 9 Level 9 (70,815 points)

    In the end I am sure you will agree that the solution suggested by Don Archibald is the easiest one.

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