Posts Tagged With: keyboard

Configuring the Language & Text Settings on a Mac

This is obviously not a problem for everyone, but for those who type in different languages it might be useful. All the settings for language input are in System Preferences, to edit them go to:

Apple mark (in the top menubar) > System Preferences > Language & Text

a.) Language tab

Pretty straightforward, just arrange the languages in the order you use them.

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b.) Input Sources tab

This is the important one. Select all the input methods you use. I use Japanese so I have selected Kotoeri which is the input method for Japanese characters on a Mac. Then within the Kotoeri sub-menu I choose the methods I prefer to use. I also like to have Unicode available just in case.

I always have my language input menu in my menu bar so I can see what language my keyboard is set to at any time. To do that you just click the box that says Show input menu in menu bar. Then it will show up like this:

c.) Language Hotkeys

If you want to change your hotkeys you can either click the button on the Input Sources tab or go to:

Apple mark > System Preferences > Keyboard

Click the Keyboard Shortcuts tab and from the side menu select Keyboard & Text Input. The ones you want are the bottom two


To change the hotkeys to suit you just double click on the current key combination and type the keys you want to change to. Make sure you hold down the keys otherwise it will just take the first key you press. It saves automatically.

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Categories: Mac & OS X | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Solution for Volume Problems in OS X

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For reference, I am using Snow Leopard, 10.6.8, on a Macbook Pro.  I don’t use external speakers, just the normal built in ones.

Recently, I had some problems with the volume in OS X. The symptoms were as follows: 

– the volume keys on the keyboard (F10, F11, F12) stopped working 

– if I pressed the volume keys they made the “plick” sound but the sound level did not increase or decrease or change in any way even when at full volume or muted

– although the volume indicator appeared on the screen showing that the buttons were working (as the volume bars increased or decreased), this had no effect on the actual sound volume itself

– the volume icon in the menu bar at the top had no effect on the volume

Strangely, I could control the volume perfectly using the System Preferences sound controls.  So clearly the volume was not broken. 

As far as I can tell this problem only occurs when use headphones or my graphics tablet.  I’m no expert but I think my poor Mac just gets confused about how it should allow the volume to be controlled.  For example, when I used my headphones to listen to music in iTunes I had all the above symptoms BUT for some reason I could still use iTunes to control the volume (as well  as being able to control the volume using System Preferences.  This is how I solve the problem when it occurs.  A lot of this may not be relevant but I’ll include it all as I’m not sure which bits are key to the solution. 

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Step 1.  Go to System Preferences > Sound


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Step 2.  On the Output Tab make sure your settings are correct for your system.  These are my settings:

I use my built-in speakers and use the audio port for Sound Output

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Step 3.  This step is not  technically necessary, but in case it affects anything these are my settings on my Sound Effects tab.

I always set my master volume quite high and and make sure the Play feedback when volume is changed is ticked.  This makes sure that when you reboot you can hear if your volume problem is fixed or not.  

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Step 4.  Remove any USBs or headphones you may have connected. 

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Step 5.  Restart your Mac. 

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Step 6.  Sign in as Admin and check your settings for Sound in System Preferences, and whether the volume controls (keys, menu bar etc.) are working properly.  If they are all OK then you should find that they are also working properly in all the other user accounts.

Categories: Mac & OS X | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Symbols in OS X

Symbols

I couldn’t find a lot of symbols when I first started using a Macbook. This was partly because I have it set up to support different languages and partly because many symbols aren’t produced by Shift.

You can get most symbols in the same way as on a Windows machine i.e. by pressing Shift.  However in OS X you can get a second set of symbols by pressing Option/Alt.

So the usual normal keys are:

Symbol
§
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
0
=
[
]
;
\
/
.
,
`

You can use this for reference.

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Symbols using Shift:

Symbol Key Combination
± Shift and §
! Shift and 1
@ Shift and 2
£ Shift and 3
$ Shift and 4
% Shift and 5
^ Shift and 6
& Shift and 7
* Shift and 8
( Shift and 9
) Shift and 0
_ Shift and –
{ Shift and [
} Shift and ]
: Shift and ;
Shift and ‘
| Shift and \
? Shift and /
> Shift and .
< Shift and ,
~ Shift and `

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You can get a different set of symbols using Alt:

Symbol Key Combination
¡ Alt and 1
Alt and 2
# Alt and 3
¢ Alt and 4
Alt and 5
§ Alt and 6
Alt and 7
Alt and 8
ª Alt and 9
º Alt and 0
Alt and =
Alt and [
Alt and ]
Alt and ;
æ Alt and ‘
« Alt and \
÷ Alt and /

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You can also get a different set of symbols using ひらがな.  If you aren’t sure how to switch input languages have a look at this post.  If you have it set up and change to hiragana

and you can get the following symbols using the usual normal keys:

Symbol
\

Symbols using Shift:

Symbol Key Combination
Shift and 1
Shift and 2
Shift and 3
Shift and 4
Shift and 5
Shift and 6
Shift and 7
Shift and 8
Shift and 9
Shift and 0
_ Shift and –
Shift and =
Shift and [
Shift and ]
Shift and ;
Shift and ‘
Shift and \
Shift and /
Shift and .
Shift and ,
Shift and `

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Symbols using Alt:

Symbol Key Combination
Alt and 1
Alt and 2
£ Alt and 3
¢ Alt and 4
Alt and 5
§ Alt and 6
Alt and 7
Alt and 8
Alt and 9
Alt and 0
Alt and =
Alt and [
Alt and ]
Alt and ;
Alt and ‘
Alt and \
Alt and `
Categories: Mac & OS X, Macbook Pro | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Few Tips for Setting up a Mac/OS X


So I’m finally getting used to using OS X after about a year.  I spent a lot of that time shouting at my Macbook Pro for not being able to do things I consider to be mandatory.  So to save others the hours of hassle and frustrated shrieking, I’m writing a series of (hopefully) useful posts to guide unwary travellers along the path of the Mac.

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Here’s a quick index:

1.) The Keyboard
2.) Configuring Right Click

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1.) The Keyboard

The main differences between a Windows keyboard and a Mac keyboard are, a.) ctrl is no longer a main player, and b.) there is no delete key.

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There are several symbols which are used to denote keys in OS X. The main ones are:

     Command (I think it used to be called the Apple Key)
     Alt/Option
     Ctrl

     Shift

   Caps

      Function

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a.) Using COMMAND (cmd)

When using OS X, Command is pretty much your new ctrl key.  For example:

copy = cmd+c

paste = cmd+v

And crucially,

for selecting separate multiple items.

cmd+click

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b.)  How to DELETE

Yes, probably obvious to most Mac users but I spent quite a long time feeling annoyed at the lack of this button.

delete = function (fn)+backspace

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2.) Trackpad: How to Change the Settings for Right Click

This is probably only useful to Macbook Pro users but this was another button I missed during my first few Mac using weeks.  Obviously you can use a mouse, but I can’t always be bothered to take one with me.  So Trackpad it is.  Using the Trackpad there are two substitutes for Right Click and you can choose the one you prefer by going to

Apple Mark > System Preferences > Trackpad

You have 2 options, you can either a.) choose to click with one finger in a specific location of the Trackpad or b.) tap with 2 fingers anywhere on the Trackpad.  Depends what you prefer.  I think it’s easier to take the second option as you can tap or click anywhere on the Trackpad.

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Categories: Mac & OS X, Macbook Pro | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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