30 Replies Latest reply: Aug 3, 2010 12:22 PM by Thomas Phinney RSS

    Typing Symbol for "Inches"

    Dave Daver

      Can anyone tell me how I can type the proper unit for inches in InDesign? Is there a proper way of doing this? All I get is qoutation marks when I use "shift" and the qoutation mark key.

       

      Thanks,

       

      DaveyDave

        • 1. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
          Community Member

          that's what I use. just turn off typographers quotes.

           

          I'd look to see if the was a glyph first

          • 2. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
            Marvin Sable Community Member

            If you seldom need typographer's quotes turing them off is a good option. If needing inch an foot marks is infrequent you can use the control key (Mac) to toggle the typographer's quotes to straight quotes. (Ctrl+Shift+") You get the single straight with ctrl + '

             

            Unfortunately the toggle doesn't work the other way if typographer's quotes are turned off.

            • 3. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
              Marvin Sable Community Member

              Sorry to neglect the PC side.On the PC that would be ALT+Shift+"

              • 4. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                FivePicaPica Community Member

                Marvin's right, but it's worth pointing out that inches should be marked with double prime marks rather than dumb/straight quotes. Most character sets don't have them, but it's worth looking at the glyph menu.

                 

                If the font does have the prime marks (eg. Helvetica), I usually just do a GREP search:

                 

                Find what: (\d)”

                Change to: $1\x{2033}

                • 5. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                  phyllisj9 Community Member

                  Definitely use real prime marks!  If you use the manual method of making a straight quote, but then you later have to cut and paste a section that has those in it -- the straight quotes will convert to curly quotes if you have typographer's quotes turned on (and you may have wanted it on for the other text).  So it's a real problem in editing. Very likely to get converted right back to curly quotes.

                   

                  The prime marks are slightly different anyway (more slanted than a straight quote).  You can make a character style if you need a different font (I think I have to switch to the Symbol font sometimes to find those).

                   

                  HTH,

                  Phyllis

                  • 6. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                    cts_graphics Community Member

                    Don't forget about Type: Insert Special Characters: Quotation Marks: Straight Double Quotation Marks

                     

                    Default shortcut of Shift-Control-Apostrophe.

                    • 7. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                      Dave Daver Community Member

                      How do you type "prime marks" instead of the straight quotation marks? I am using helvetica neue. thanks!

                      • 8. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                        Kenneth Benson Community Member

                        Helvetica Neue doesn't have a prime, but you can get a prime or double prime from Symbol font. Go to the Glyphs palette, change the font to Symbol, and choose prime or double prime. If you're on Windows, you can just type ALT 0162 (prime) or ALT 0179 (double prime) from the numeric keypad while Symbol is selected.

                         

                        Ken Benson

                        • 9. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                          Dave Daver Community Member

                          Is that the same for MAC?

                          • 10. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                            Kenneth Benson Community Member

                            The Glyphs part is the same. I don't know how you can access extended characters from the keyboard on a Mac.

                             

                            Ken Benson

                            • 11. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                              Eric @ MCA Community Member

                              AFAIK, there is no keyboard shortcut way to access the special characters that are not attached to the option, control and shift modifiers and I'm pretty sure that one is not.

                               

                              You have to use the ID Glyphs palette or the Mac Character palette from the International input menu. (Looks like a little flag, enable it under System Preferences->International->Input Menu->Character palette.)

                              • 12. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                Thomas Phinney Community Member

                                If the font doesn't have a double prime mark, try using the vertical double quote ("dumb" double quote), but italicize it. That gets about as close to the double prime mark as you'll find, and will better match the weight/style of the typeface than just borrowing the double prime from the Symbol font. Leastways, that's been my experience as a typographer who is unduly fussy about such things.  :)

                                 

                                Cheers,

                                 

                                T

                                 

                                http://www.thomasphinney.com

                                • 13. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                  imjeffp Community Member

                                  Control-shift-" doesn't work for me on Snow Leopard/AI CS4.

                                  • 14. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                    P Spier CommunityMVP

                                    Try Opt + Shift + ". Thats the Mac equivalent of the Windows Alt + Shift + " which works.

                                    • 15. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                      Eugene Tyson CommunityMVP

                                      For me it's "Alt Shift ' "@ for prime marks

                                       

                                      ' = apostrophe

                                      • 16. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                        imjeffp Community Member

                                        Wait--I'm in the InDesign forum? Well shoot. Control-shift-" works in ID. I thought I was in the Illustrator forum. Control-shift-" doesn't work in AI.

                                         

                                        Nice going Adobe. I thought the whole idea with the "suite" thing was commonality?

                                        • 17. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                          P Spier CommunityMVP

                                          Eugene,

                                           

                                          What's the @ in your post all about?

                                           

                                          And I guess it would be more proper to say I get straight quotes rather than primes, which should be angled (Thomas mentions using italics to fake it).

                                          • 18. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                            P Spier CommunityMVP

                                            Down the hall, on your left...


                                            • 19. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                              Eugene Tyson CommunityMVP

                                              Yup I changed it, my little finger was stuck on the shift key

                                               

                                              I've been looking up the Unicode and it says it's 2034, but I can't get it to work? And I've tried Arial Unicode font, which has a prime mark (copied prime mark from Wikipedia)

                                               

                                              So I guess you could use a stright quote then copy the wikipedia versoin, then find and replace using grep

                                              • 20. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                macinbytes Community Member

                                                I've had prime marks rejected in favor of straight quote marks. I think it is kind of like many clients insisting on using hyphens on prefixes. Even after explaining the proper use and even getting them to be in agreement that it is correct I have to change layouts for those two circumstances.

                                                 

                                                I know prime marks are correct, but who uses them for print? I've never seen literature in a Home Depot, Lowe's or Menard's that used a single or double prime mark. I am just wondering who is using them? Never once have I seen a prime symbol in POP or sales literature.

                                                • 21. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                  RodneyA Community Member

                                                  Most science journals and mathematicians use real "prime" marks. I wouldn't expect Home Depot ads to choose "correct" over "fast." Although there's graphics software out there that uses the circle accent that goes over the Danish å instead of true degree signs (which are larger). When preparing maps in the seismology journal I publish, I try to change all the primes and degrees to proper symbols when the software will let me in...

                                                   

                                                  Note that once you've inserted a Glyph using the Symbol font the first time, it will show up in the top row of the Glyphs palette, and is easier to insert, since you don't have to explicitly change the font.

                                                  • 22. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                    macinbytes Community Member

                                                     

                                                     

                                                    I'm accustomed to seeing primes for GIS software or reading maps, which makes sense. I've never seen primes used anywhere outside of mapping. Though the prime symbol may be correct on some level to indicate inches and feet, but no one is using it. I've never seen an engineered or manufactured drawing use them. Never see them in architectural drawing. I think outside of cartography " > ˝

                                                     

                                                     

                                                    I just think it is bad advice to tell people to use prime marks when most customers want straight quotes and don't care what is right per the dictionary. They will say snuck and don't care how many times you tell them it is sneaked.

                                                     

                                                    shift + opt + e  = ´

                                                     

                                                    shift + opt + g  = ˝

                                                     

                                                    if you want the keystroke. This is true on the mac for all programs including Illustrator, InDesign and your standard system text input.

                                                     

                                                     

                                                    • 23. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                      Pete@NB Community Member

                                                      Try using> shift option g

                                                      • 24. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                        macinbytes Community Member

                                                        That and the shortcuts I listed above are for the double acute and acute symbols, but they will get you by.

                                                         

                                                        One is much more likely to find those in fonts, though real type crazies will tell you to use a double prime and not a double acute. Very few fonts have prime marks. None of the Adobe fonts that ship with CS5 have them that aren't Asian. Looking through a pile of fonts I'm seeing only Arno as a layoutworthy font with prime symbols.

                                                         

                                                        I'm still antiprime. Straight quotes do the job, match the typeface and are less of a hassle to keep consistent. I've still never seen primes used in anything other than geographics.

                                                        • 25. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                          phyllisj9 Community Member

                                                          macinbytes wrote:

                                                           

                                                          I am just wondering who is using them? Never once have I seen a prime symbol in POP or sales literature.

                                                           

                                                          I use them in an exhibitor brochure I put together every year.  It lists the dimensions of all the trade booths.  I use prime and double-prime for the measurements, and I also use a multiplication-sign instead of an x (in things like 6' x 4').  To me the real prime marks look better, plus I know they won't accidentally get switched to curly-quotes if I move things around.

                                                           

                                                          I'm also picky about n-dashes and m-dashes. 

                                                           

                                                          Phyllis

                                                          • 26. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                            FergyMac Community Member

                                                            FWIW I switch fonts to Universal News with Commercial Pi and type the number "9" for inch marks and "8" gives me the foot symbol.

                                                            • 27. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                              macinbytes Community Member

                                                              I use them in an exhibitor brochure I put together every year.  It lists the dimensions of all the trade booths.  I use prime and double-prime for the measurements, and I also use a multiplication-sign instead of an x (in things like 6' x 4').  To me the real prime marks look better, plus I know they won't accidentally get switched to curly-quotes if I move things around.

                                                               

                                                              I'm also picky about n-dashes and m-dashes. 

                                                               

                                                              Phyllis

                                                              Any artist should be particular about the correct use of the n dash. Almost every font has n and m dashes, multiplication symbols, fractional slashes, and the like.

                                                               

                                                              I know most of the time someone is going to type a male ordinal instead of a degree symbol just out of convenience. Fonts typically contain a degree symbol, male ordinal, and the little ring buddy that can all pretty much serve the same purpose. I've only ever seen layouts use the º option+0 version of the degree symbol.

                                                               

                                                              9º 9˚ 9°

                                                               

                                                              The prime and double prime just look wrong to most people. Type designers create a straight and curly quote for almost every font that has over 200 characters. Out of 2500 fonts I had fewer than a dozen that contained a prime symbol, all of them 20k or better character count. The sarcasm punctuation mark will see more typefaces in 5 years than the prime mark. I prefer set my own typographer quotes when needed, but I just can't back up the use of the prime for anything other than topography.

                                                              • 28. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                                phyllisj9 Community Member

                                                                macinbytes wrote:


                                                                 

                                                                The prime and double prime just look wrong to most people.

                                                                 

                                                                I've never had any complaints.  And the straight quotes always look wrong to me!  But to each their own....  :-)

                                                                • 29. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                                  Joel Cherney CommunityMVP

                                                                  I've had complaints regarding my use of actual inch marks from graphic designers and communications majors... and commendations from architects, math professors, and civil engineers. Your mileage may vary.

                                                                  • 30. Re: Typing Symbol for "Inches"
                                                                    Thomas Phinney Community Member

                                                                    It's quite dangerous to use the masculine ordinal for a degree symbol. Not only is it the wrong height and too large, but in some typefaces it is underlined. Besides being wrong and looking wrong, it means your text may not correctly survive a font change very well. Given that the degree symbol is in pretty much every font, there's not much excuse for not using it.

                                                                     

                                                                    And to be clear: using vertical typewriter quotes for inches is just wrong. The real primes are in Adobe's newest fonts, as well as in a few old stand-by symbol/pi fonts. Italicizing the typewriter quotes will get you reasonably close if you don't have a better alternative. Yes, some people may think they look odd, but we heard the same thing when oldstyle figures started making a comeback ten years ago. They were as typographically correct then as they are now, even if the average viewer wasn't used to them. They'll learn.

                                                                     

                                                                    Cheers,

                                                                     

                                                                    T