I've recently been writing a lot of documentation and would love to be able to type native superscript characters (⁰, ¹, ², ³, ⁴, ⁵) to call out caveats/annotations. The writing environment I'm in does not support markup such as <sup> or LaTeX-like ^1 ^2 ^3 ^4 ^5.

My current solution for inserting these characters is to;

  1. Permanently enable the "input menu in menu bar" in Keyboard.prefPane -> Input Sources
  2. Mouse over to the input menu icon, click it, then 'Show Character Viewer'.
  3. Once the Character Viewer is shown, mouse to the character search box, and type either the number to superscript, or literally enter the word 'superscript' which will helpfully give me 0-9 that I can quickly use if necessary.

How can I shorten the time necessary to input these characters?

  • This is related to or a duplicate of apple.stackexchange.com/questions/183045/…, but the specific details of Unicode codepoints (what's a Unicode?) causes it to be difficult to search for imo. I'm fine with it being closed if it is deemed necessary, I just want this question/answer to remain for search fodder. – Jason Salaz Jul 10 at 9:33
  • I like having a link if you want to edit how it’s related in your answer. This question is all about fast focus - the other question has a lot else going on. – bmike Jul 10 at 10:38
  • Possible duplicate of What do I type to produce the command symbol (⌘) in Mac OS X? – Tim Jul 11 at 9:24

I had thought that the command + control + space (⌘^␣) picker was emoji-only, boy was I mistaken. Or perhaps it's changed since I last looked inevitably 1-3 releases of macOS ago?

Screenshot of the Character Viewer in command+ctrl+space popover mode with '1' entered in the search bar

This is absolutely the fastest way to enter any character, provided it's unicode name isn't overly esoteric.

  • How do I input those keys you called out? cmd+6+underscore doesn't work. Neither does cmd+shift+6+underscore. I'm new at this. – spacetyper Jul 10 at 17:59
  • 7
    @spacetyper those are the shortcut characters in Mac - the caret is used to denote Ctrl and the last one is not an underscore, that's a (U+2423 Open Box) character, which is used to denote a space. Thus, the goal would be cmd+ctrl+space. See here – Delioth Jul 10 at 18:18
  • @Delioth Ooo got it, thank you! – spacetyper Jul 10 at 18:23
  • @spacetyper see apple.meta.stackexchange.com/q/193/1346 for lots of fantastic information about our Keyboard shortcut standards, and labeling on macOS. – Jason Salaz Jul 10 at 19:54

Set up text replacements for your characters in system preferences/keyboard/text/replace with

enter image description here

Your Answer

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy, and that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.