For example, if you press and hold the Shift key, the top row of keys changes to a tilde, exclamation point, ampersand, and so on. If you press and hold the Option key, you see even more characters, as shown below. From top to bottom, the Keyboard Viewer with no modifier keys held down, with Shift held down, with Option held down, and with both Shift and Option held down. Modifier keys are gray when active. When the Option key is held down, some keys appear in orange to indicate diacritical marks that can be added above some letters.
To apply these marks, keep holding down the Option key and then click the orange key in the Keyboard Viewer or on your physical keyboard and then click the letter on your physical keyboard that you want to apply it to. To use one of the alternates, either type the number that appears beneath it, or click the one you want.
To dismiss the menu, either type a different character or press the Escape key. With this combination pressed the keyboard will now produce a different set or an uppercase version of the previous set in some cases.
Keyboard Viewer and Mac keyboard shortcuts for symbols
Notice that holding the shift key as well as the option key while pressing a letter key may create "capital" versions of what results when the same letter key is pressed while the option key but not the shift key is held. For example:. The key is also used to provide for alternative menu items and buttons when pressed down. The iPhoto example is an example of a control whose behavior is governed by a preference which is temporarily inverted by holding down the Option key.
The preference in this case is which way to rotate the image: If the user changes the default rotation direction in the Preferences to clockwise, holding down Option will make the button rotate counterclockwise instead, and vice versa.
Accent Codes for the Macintosh
It is common for such controls — that is, those whose behavior is governed by a preference — to be invertible in this way. In text areas , the Option key can be used for quick keyboard navigation. In browsers such as Safari and SeaMonkey , the option key can be used to download a file. Pressing down the option key when hitting return in the address bar causes the URL-specified file to be downloaded.
Help with Macintosh | School of Languages, Cultures, and Race | Washington State University
Also, pressing the option key when clicking a hyperlink causes the link target to be downloaded. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. I like to use the widget CharacterPal When you hover over a symbol, you can see its coding.
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Copy a symbol to the clipboard by clicking on it. This will copy the coding. Miscellaneous Symbols - see here for info.
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