Typing special characters...

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Gene

Member
Us, English
How are some of you english speaking users typing special characters like accents, and especially the upside down question mark?
 
  • cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    Gene said:
    How are some of you english speaking users typing special characters like accents, and especially the upside down question mark?
    Hola Gene:

    Simple: there are at least three ways for PC users...the ALT key + numbers,
    The extended ASCII character sets, and configuration of your kb and resident software. For MAC users like me, it's even easier, just hit the opt key plus a letter, then type the letter to be accented. It's a bit like the 'dead' key on an old manual typewriter I used to use for Spanish papers when I was in college.

    I believe you can use the search facilitiy here to find a thread with a good explanation of the PC methods, right here in the forum. For lists and tables of the exact keystrokes, just go to a search engine and type something like
    "foreign language characters". That will give you lots of sites, most put up by U.S. universities, with explicit instructions.

    If you use a Mac, for example, you type opt+e, the whatever vowel you want to get an acute accent: á é í ó ú. The ñ is just opt+n, then n, or a if you want ã in português.

    Let me know if you have trouble finding the sources.

    Que tengas mucha suerte,
    Cuchufléte
     

    garryknight

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    cuchufléte said:
    Simple: there are at least three ways for PC users...the ALT key + numbers,
    The extended ASCII character sets, and configuration of your kb and resident software.
    The first way only works for PC Windows users as far as I know. It certainly doesn't work for us Linux users, though the other 2 methods do.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    garryknight said:
    The first way only works for PC Windows users as far as I know. It certainly doesn't work for us Linux users, though the other 2 methods do.
    Thanks for that info Garry. When linux gets around to implementing something, it will probably be as easy or easier than with the MAC. And it won't come with all we've come to adore from Mr. Gates and Co.

    Whose flavor of Linux are you using? I ask because I'm due to upgrade ordenadores, and am considering a PC for some apps.

    Thanks,

    Cuchu


    It's just a job. Grass grows, birds fly, waves pound the sand. I beat people up. -- Muhammed Ali
     

    Magda

    Member
    USA - English
    I can't help you if you're a Mac or Linux user, but if you have Windows and you actually do type a lot in other languages like Spanish, French, etc., then the easiest thing is to change the language of your keyboard. If you change it to Spanish, for instance, you get all the French accents, too, in addition to ñ and ç, which means you don't have to use any "special characters". You can usually do this from Control Panel, or click on Start, go to Help, type in "change keyboard language" and then just follow instructions. The Spanish keyboard layout is basically the same except for minor changes such as: ñ and N are where : and ; are on the English keyboard. The dash, hyphen, apostrophe, and some other "signs" are in different places, but you get used it pretty quick and it's much less of a pain than having to use special characters all the time since the Spanish keyboard is good for English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, etc.
     

    garryknight

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    cuchufléte said:
    When linux gets around to implementing something, it will probably be as easy or easier than with the MAC.
    It already is easier. I can set up different keyboard profiles for different languages, then switch between them with a couple of clicks. Or I can use a character selector program and enter accented characters manually. I'm using the latter method at the moment as I haven't found (or made) time to set up the first method.

    cuchufléte said:
    Whose flavor of Linux are you using?
    Mandrake 10.0 at the moment. It's (arguably) the easiest version for newcomers to learn while still being comprehensive enough for the power user.
     

    Lems

    Senior Member
    Brazil - Brazilian Portuguese
    Gene said:
    How are some of you english speaking users typing special characters like accents, and especially the upside down question mark?
    Hi Gene

    While you don't have your keyboard configured you may use the ASCII symbols, by pressing the ALT key (and keeping it down) followed by 168, in order to get the upside down question mark. ;)

    If you press ALT 173 you get the exclamation mark upside down.

    To get the other Spanish accents use:

    á 160 Á 181
    é 130 É 144
    í 161 Í 214
    ó 162 Ó 224
    ú 163 Ú 218
    ñ 164 Ñ 165
    ¿ 168
    ¡ 173

    Hope this helps

    Lems

    ________________________
    Gracias por sus correcciones.
    I appreciate any correction.
     

    simplyaStudent

    Member
    usa - english
    Gene said:
    How are some of you english speaking users typing special characters like accents, and especially the upside down question mark?
    Gene,

    If you are a prisoner of Microsoft, it's easy.

    The best way to get Spanish accents is simply to change your keyboard character set to English International.

    That way, you keep what you have and get access to the accents simply by holding down the [alt] and [ctl] keys while striking the letter you want. For example, here is a with the [alt] and [cnt] keys down: á. Otherwise, everything is just as it was.

    ~ simplyaStudent
     

    Ilmo

    Member Emeritus
    drei_lengua said:
    There is a word document at http://www.colby.edu/lrc/help/diacritics.html called Keystrokes for MS WORD. I am able to type the Spanish accents but not the upside down question mark. Am I missing something?

    Thanks,
    drei
    Hello Drei
    I had no problem in typing the upside down question mark in MS WORD.
    By the way, there is a easier way for the WORD users, using so called automatic correction while writing (it is in the tools menu). Just use keystroke combinations that never appear in normal text, for instance % and the letter in question, and define that it shall be corrected to the corresponding accented letter: %a --> á, %n --> ñ and maybe too %? --> ¿ though I use ?? --> ¿
    Try it
     
    Ilmo said:
    Hello Drei
    I had no problem in typing the upside down question mark in MS WORD.
    By the way, there is a easier way for the WORD users, using so called automatic correction while writing (it is in the tools menu). Just use keystroke combinations that never appear in normal text, for instance % and the letter in question, and define that it shall be corrected to the corresponding accented letter: %a --> á, %n --> ñ and maybe too %? --> ¿ though I use ?? --> ¿
    Try it
    Ilmo,

    Thanks for the reply. Actually, although the document says MS Word, I want to be able to type these characters anywhere like in this forum. I kind of misled myself because I looked at the document and was able to type á, é, etc. by hitting the quote button and then the letter a, e, etc. I then assumed I could do the same with the Spanish question marks. I couldn't do it here but could in MS Word. Is there any easier way? Why would the letters with accents work here but not the Spanish question marks? I am on a laptop and cannot enter the 3-digit ASCII codes. Any suggestions?

    Gracias de antemano,
    drei
     

    SpiceMan

    Senior Member
    Castellano, Argentina
    When I started on computers, DOS was in english, etc, so I got used to the english layout.
    However you can set the language in spanish while keeping your keys layout (english).
    Then with the same layout, you need to type two keys sometimes for a single letter:

    '' = gets you a '
    'a = gets you á (and so on with all vowels)
    ^a = gets you â (and so on for portuguese, and french)
    `a = gets you à (for portuguese and french)
    "a = gets you ä (german, etc, and spanish for ü)
    ~n, ~a, ~o = gets you ñ, ã, õ (for spanish and portuguese)
    'c = gets you ç

    or do some key combinations:
    alt-? = gets you ¿
    alt-1 = gets you ¡

    Plenty for all romance languages and some germanic/saxon ones. Can't do slavic's caron.

    In order to do this, you go to your regional settings, choose Spanish language, and set the keyboard layout to "US - International" like this: http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/7658/teclado3vh.png

    You can also have your present layout, and switch between layouts with ctrl+shift. (actually cycle between all languages, but if there are 2 languages it's switching ;))

    edit: now that I've read your last reply... even more so, this is what you would like, as by your description it seems to work the same way it does on MS Word.
     

    cyndyhat

    New Member
    United States
    on a MAC it is so much easier for special characters..just the opt key + whichever key to make a special character or opt + shift + whichever key to make a special character...don't be so scared of a MAC..they are so much easier to deal with and guess what...don't have to worry about viruses!!
     

    El Gabacho

    Senior Member
    Hello,

    I am looking for the best way to translate "characters" as used in the context of this forum, into Spanish.

    Suggestions?

    Thank you!

    by the way, I have my keyboard set to US-EN and to ES-MX via the control panel - international options. To switch back and forth between configurations, I just hit the alt-shift. It works well because when I shift the keyboard langauge, then word automatically switches dictionaries at the same time doing spell check in the appropriate language. I have been using this method for over 10 years beginning with Windows 95 and am now using it in Windows XP.
     
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