Placing a tilde on an “n” is a cinch when you’re writing by hand. All it takes is a flick of the wrist to add the tilde on top of the n.
On a typewriter, it was easy if it had the eñe built in. On a Spanish-style typewriter keyboard, the eñe will typically appear between the L and the comma, so no problem there. Otherwiese, you type the “n,” press backspace, rotate the carriage halfway up by hand, and type the tilde (or hyphen if the keyboard doesn’t have a tilde). That took a little more work, but it was a straightforward process that was obvious enough.
On computers, on Macs, Windows, and others, the fastest way is to rely on a keyboard shortcuts. The problem is, memorizing so many shortcuts can be a pain. To bypass the need to memorize or look up a shortcut, some people took to keeping an eñe on their clipboard. Or when they needed the eñe, they’d look up “España” on the net and add it to the clipboard from there. These were roundabout methods and really just a little bit crazy.
There must be an easier way to type words like “señores” and “señoras,” “señas” and “baños.” On a Mac running OSX Lion there is an easier, less confusing way to write eñe.
Learn more after the jump.
For typing on a keyboard, Mac OSX borrowed a clever tactic from the iPhone’s iOS. On an iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad, holding down a key for a moment will show options. Hold down the n key to call up options, when buttons for the ñ, ń, and n appear, slide your finger to ñ and then release.
Mac OSX has adapted the iOS method for the Mac keyboard. The following tip, though, only works on Macs running 10.7 Lion. If you are running Mac OSX Tiger, Leopard, or Snow Leopard, please check out this tutorial:
Now here’s what you do on Mac OSX Lion.
- Hold down the n on the Mac keyboard. This will bring up options for ñ and ń.
- Click on the ñ that appears on the screen. Alternatively, you can also type the number that appears under the ñ, in this case the 1.
And there it is. The eñe should appear on the screen. Now you can invite your friends over for piña colada.