A mac US-based keyboard layout thought for people who have to write Spanish characters from time to time
This keyboard layout for mac moves/changes some of the "option" key modifiers so they are more useful to people who have to switch between English and Spanish on their day-to-day job using mac.
In other words, this layout makes easier to write the characters on this list: ¡¿áéíóúüÁÉÍÓÚÜñÑ
Glyph Us Layout us-4-es layout us-4-es alt ------------------------------------------------- á ⌥ e, a ⌥ a ⌥ ', a é ⌥ e, e ⌥ e ⌥ ', e í ⌥ e, i ⌥ i ⌥ ', i ó ⌥ e, o ⌥ o ⌥ ', o ú ⌥ e, u ⌥ u ⌥ ', u Á ⌥ e, ⇧ a ⌥ ⇧ a ⌥ ', ⇧ a É ⌥ e, ⇧ e ⌥ ⇧ e ⌥ ', ⇧ e Í ⌥ e, ⇧ i ⌥ ⇧ i ⌥ ', ⇧ i Ó ⌥ e, ⇧ o ⌥ ⇧ o ⌥ ', ⇧ o Ú ⌥ e, ⇧ u ⌥ ⇧ u ⌥ ', ⇧ u ñ ⌥ n, n ⌥ n Ñ ⌥ n, ⇧ n ⌥ ⇧ n ü ⌥ u, u ⌥ ⇧ ', u Ü ⌥ u, ⇧ u ⌥ ⇧ ', ⇧ u ¿ ⌥ ⇧ / ⌥ / ¡ ⌥ 1 ⌥ 1
- Accented vowels are accesible via ⌥ + vowel / uppercase vowel.
- On the ES layout, accent is on the ' key. That's why I've included an "alternative" way to type the words, using ⌥ ' and then the vowel. This makes the ' key behave like on the ES layout, except that you need to remember to press ⌥ before the accent.
- The ~ accent is not possible to produce. Istead, ñ and Ñ are produced directly with ⌥ n and ⌥ N.
- The ¨ accent has been moved to ⌥ ⇧ '. This makes tying ü and Ü a bit more complex, but simplifies the much common case (ú and Ú).
- The opening exclamation mark makes a lot of sense on the US layout, so I have not modified it on this layout. I wanted to include it on the list above for completeness.
- Download the us-4-es.keylayout file from this repository
- Copy it to /Library/Keyboard Layouts (You will need administrative persmissions)
- Go to System Preferences/Language & Text/Input Sources and activate us-4-es (you might need to scroll quite a bit to find it on the list)
- Make sure "Show input menu in menu bar" is activated
- A flag representing your current keyboard layout should have appeared in the menu bar, near the top right. Click on it, and you should see us-4-es in the menu that will appear.
- You can use us-4-es now
What you lose
This new mapping makes the Spanish Glyphs easier to type, but at a (normally negligible) price. The Spanish glyphs now "obscure" some glyphs that previously existed in the U.S. layout.
Most of those glyphs are greek/mathematical in nature, and most people will not need them anyway.
One important exception are the ¨ and ^ accents, previosly on the u and i letters, respectively. If you need to use those frequently, you might not want to use this layout.
The .keylayout format is xml-based, and a bit of a pain to work with via a text editor. Instead of using vim to create this layout, I used a tiny app called ukeleke. It provides a more human-friendly way to create keyboard layouts, and I definitively recommend it (just remember that "Dead keys" means "accent keys"). Give it a look if you want to do a uk-4-es layout, for example.