How to Create a APL or Math Symbols Keyboard Layout ⌨

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This page shows you how to create a keyboard layout for inputting math symbols. for {Windows, Mac OS X, Linux}.

For example, you can create APL (programming language) keyboard layout, or for LaTeX/XeTeX, or simply as a system to type math symbols in plain text.

APL Keyboard Layout

APL keyboard layout
APL keyboard layout. img src
APL2 keyboard layout
APL2 keyboard layout. img src

APL Symbols in Unicode

Here's a complete list of APL symbols in Unicode.

¯ × ÷


APL Symbols Meaning

See: APL Symbols Meaning.

Find Math Symbols

For other math symbols, such as , see:

Or, use the search box.

Unicode Search

Unicode Font

First you need to have a font that has most math characters. The free DejaVu font has all APL symbols and vast majority of math symbols. See: Best Unicode Fonts for Programing.

Creating Your Own Unicode Layout for {Windows, Mac, Linux}

mac unicode char
Mac OS X, 【⌥ Opt+key】 can be customized to insert your favorite symbol.

For Mac OS X, see: Mac OS X: How to Create Keyboard Layout and Keybinding ⌨

For Windows, i haven't tried but Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator may work. See: Windows: Keyboard Layout Tools, Key Macro Tools ⌨

Linux, i haven't tried but see: Linux: Keyboard Tools for Key Layout, Keymapping, Keybinding ⌨

Using Emacs

Insert by Keyboard Shortcut

;; example of systematic keys to insert math symbols
(global-set-key (kbd "<f9> <right>") "→")
(global-set-key (kbd "<f9> a") "α")
(global-set-key (kbd "<f9> b") "β")
(global-set-key (kbd "<f9> t") "θ")

this method of input is:

For more detail, see: Emacs: How to Define Keys.

Insert by Abbrev

You can insert Unicode by abbrev. ⁖ typing alpha becomes α. For how, see: Using Emacs's Abbrev Mode for Abbreviation.

This method is:

Insert by Short Code and a Activation Key

This package lets you type a short code, from 1 to 4 letters, then press 【⇧ Shift+Space】 to change it to a math symbol. See: Math Symbols Input Mode (xmsi-mode).

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