How the Chinese Pinyin IM & Japanese Kana IM work is obvious (at least to me) but I have been experimenting unsuccessfully for a while with one of the Korean ones. Keyboard viewer helps, but using it is proctalgia (at least for me). Plus, understanding how it works is probably much easier than memorizing several dozen keystroke sequences.

Trying to find documentation by web search (with "Mac" or "OS X" in the search input) gives me:

  • Many hits for Windows and Linux

  • Many hits for how to select the IM

  • One hit for System 8.5

  • One page about a free KoreanIM "from Apple" (NOT!) that is actually malware.

Are any of the CJK input methods documented anywhere in English or Spanish?


Years ago (for OS 9 I think) Apple produced manuals for these IM's, which you can sometimes still find online, but I don't know how useful they are now.

For OS X, for each IM, when it is active, you should find a Help item further down in the "Flag" menu. Below is what comes up for Korean. Otherwise you have to rely on google to find explanations provided by individuals, such as


for the 2-Set IM. Below are also cheat sheets for the two Romaja IM's I found (first Gongjincheong and then HNC).

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Gongjincheong IM


  • The Romaja at the bottom of the list is far more intuitive than the one I tried first, which also did not have a Help on the menu. This Romaja's Help is good. It would be slightly more intuitive if the keyboard layout were a better match for the romanization, but it will do for me. Thanks! – WGroleau Sep 29 '16 at 18:13
  • You are right, the differences between input and romanization are a real pain. Koreans prefer the 2-set method I understand. I have added a couple of cheat sheets I found for HNC and Gongjincheong. – Tom Gewecke Sep 29 '16 at 18:49
  • Sigh. Now, EVERY time I change apps or go to a new web page, the keyboard changes to Korean! – WGroleau Sep 30 '16 at 2:56
  • The cheats were useful, but for what it's worth, I found it easer to just do my Korean on the iPad where I can actually see the glyphs on the virtual keyboard. – WGroleau Mar 30 '20 at 23:02

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