What Are The Keyboard Symbol Names? [Mastering The Language]

The keyboard is the main gateway to accessing and manipulating data on a computer. Its primary function is to allow users to input letters and numbers. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg. The keyboard houses a plethora of symbols that have diverse functions, ranging from modifying text to activating special commands. In this article, we will embark on a journey of discovery, delving into the intricate world of keyboard symbols, their names, and how to utilize them with precision and finesse for optimal efficiency.

Windows Keyboard Layout

US-windows-keyboard

These are the symbols on the Windows keyboard in the United States. The bottom row has a Windows Key and a Menu key. You can find the names of all the Windows symbols below.

Mac Keyboard Layout

us-mac-keyboard

These are the symbols on a Mac keyboard in the United States. The keyboard includes the Command key, as well as the Control and Option keys on the bottom row. The names of all the symbols are listed below.

These are the names of the symbols on the top row of the keyboard where the numbers are. Let’s take a look.

Keyboard Symbols

Symbol Name
` grave, grave accent, backtick, back quote
~ tilde
! exclamation mark, exclamation point, bang
@ at, at sign, at symbol
# pound, hash, number
$ dollar(s)
% percent, percent sign, parts per 100
^ carat, hat, circumflex, exponent symbol
& and, ampersand
* asterisk
( open parenthesis, left parenthesis
) close parenthesis, right parenthesis
( ) parentheses, round brackets
hyphen, minus, minus sign, dash
_ underscore
= equals, equal sign
+ addition, plus sign
[ ] brackets, square brackets
[ open bracket
] close bracket
{ } braces, curly brackets
{ open brace
} close brace
\ backslash, backward slash
| vertical pipe, pipe
; semicolon
: colon
apostrophe, prime, single quote
quotation mark, double quotes
, comma
. period, decimal, dot
/ slash, forward slash
<> angle brackets
< less than
> greater than
? question mark

Special Symbols Using Shortcuts

U.S. keyboards have unique symbols that are accessed via shortcuts or special symbols. A table that displays the special symbol names and how to show them with Mac shortcuts is provided below.

Special Symbol Name Mac
£ pound(s), pound sterling Option + 3 (US) Shift + 3 (UK)
$ dollar(s) Shift + 4
¢ cent(s) Option + 4
euro(s) Option + Shift + 2 (US) Option + 2 (UK)
¥ Japanese yen, Chinese yuan Option + y
infinity Option + 5
§ section Option + 6
paragraph Option + 7
trademark Option + 2
© copyright Option + g
® registered trademark Option + r
bullet Option + 8
º degree Option + Shift +8
± plus or minus Option + Shift + =
not equal sign, inequality Option + =
approximately Option + x
upper case sigma, summation Option + w
π lower case pi Option + p
upper case pi Option + Shift + p
square root, radical Option + v
% percent, parts per 100 Shift + 5
per mille, parts per 1000 Option + Shift + r
÷ division Option + /
less than or equal to Option + ,
greater than or equal to Option + .
dagger, cross Option + t
double dagger, double cross Option + Shift + 7
ellipsis Option + ;
en dash Option + –
em dash Option + Shift + –
upper case delta, change Option + j
Ω upper case omega Option + z
µ lower case mu, population mean Option + m

Modifier Keys for Mac and Windows

Both Mac and Windows have modifier keys that enable users to perform special functions like copying, pasting, saving, and printing. On Mac, the symbol or command key was introduced in 1980 and offers several shortcuts. Similarly, the control key or Ctrl on Windows has comparable functionality.

Special Key Name Mac Windows
Alt or Option Alt
Caps Lock Caps Lock Caps Lock
Command Cmd
Control Ctrl
Delete or Backspace Delete Backspace
Escape or Cancel Esc Esc
Enter or Return Enter
Function fn Fn
Shift Shift
Tab Tab Tab

Using Keyboard Shortcuts in Excel

Knowing keyboard symbols enables users to employ shortcuts that save time compared to using a mouse. Excel provides excellent examples of such shortcuts, particularly for opening, saving, and printing files.

Excel Action Mac Windows
New workbook ⌘+N Ctrl+N
Open workbook ⌘+O Ctrl+O
Save workbook ⌘+S Ctrl+S
Save as ⌘+⇧+S F12
Print ⌘+P Ctrl+P
Close workbook ⌘+W Ctrl+F4
Quit Excel ⌘+Q Alt+F4
Sayan Dutta
Sayan Dutta

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