Wednesday, 25 May 2016

How to insert symbols and fractions in blog posts

When writing family history stories one may need to use a fraction of a year for expressing a person's age or if transcribing from a document one may find a person's height or weight expressed with fractions. A knowledge of keyboard shortcuts helps, and the oft forgotten ALT key with a number pad provides the solution.

For those accustomed to using word processing programs the Insert symbol or Insert special characters gave access to fractions and a variety of other useful symbols. Maths teachers have long used insert equation in MS Word to produce those endless worksheets and exams.

Many of us just need the simple one quarter, one half and three quarters.
1. Access the list of codes from Useful Shortcuts or from Keynote support.
2. Save for ready reference in Evernote or Google Drive, tag as codes, symbols, fractions.
3. Ready to insert? Switch on NUM LOCK, hold down the ALT key and type the code you need.
If your keyboard does not have a numeric keypad you can still access the numbers by finding the FN key with NUM Lock in the same colour on your keyboard. Remember to turn if off after you have used the code you want.

So for ¼ I have NUM LOCK turned on, held down the ALT key and typed 0188, ½ is 0189 and ¾ is 0190. Fractions may be highlighted as with any other text to alter size or bold.

This works in both Blogger and Wordpress blogs. I find this a much easier method to insert fractions rather than having to use HTML coding. If you are typing your blog post on an iPad the easiest way to get fractions is to add them as text short cuts. Tony Mortlock has a post Fractions on the iPad with instructions on how to add them as shortcuts. Do you have another simple method of adding fractions to your blog posts?

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