Have you ever wanted to find that special type character, symbol or widget but cannot find the correct font or keyboard combination to insert into a document?  OS X provides Mac users with a much expanded character set with Unicode support. Now you can access a broad range of characters for foreign languages, math symbols and dingbats. The secret is hidden in the OS X Character Palette.

To access these special characters - add the Character Palette to the menu bar by the following steps:

  1. Open the System Preferences and click on the International preference pane.
  2. Click on the Input Menu tab.
  3. Check the box next to Character Palette.
  4. Go ahead and close the preferences panes.

International Preference Pane

The Character Palette menu item is now displayed at the end of menu bar at the top of your screen. This menu item is available always and in all applications. Now choose Show Character Palette from the Character Palette menu. Then choose All from the View menu and click the Unicode Blocks tab.

Character Palette

Use the Insert button to insert the character(s) you'd like to include in your document. You can use the insert button only in native OS X cocoa and unicode aware applications. In classic and carbon applications the insert button will be gray.

Stephen Henry
NCMUG Webmaster