How to Create Your Own Shortcut ¯ \ _ (ツ) _ / ¯ on Your Mac

Anyone who has ever worked with me on Slack or any other messaging client knows that I love using the shrug emoji. Not an ordinary smiley, but this one: ¯ \ _ (ツ) _ / ¯

This is a great way to answer a series of questions. There is only one problem: typing on the keyboard is a huge pain. The first few weeks I used it, I typed it carefully every time I wanted to use it. Then I smacked up and copied it into the Notes app on my Mac so I could quickly copy / paste.

Now, a year (or a few years?) Later, Quartz suggested a shrug , and I’m a little surprised I didn’t come up with it myself: do it with a keyboard shortcut.

The writer Quartz actually programmed his external keyboard, so there is a real shrug button (you can find out how here ). If it’s too hard for you (it’s for me), you can simply create a shortcut for it on your Mac using the Mac’s text replacement feature.

To make this happen, go to the System Preferences menu on your Mac, then Keyboard, and then Text.

After that, you will be taken to a menu where you can add auto-corrections for different phrases. For example, you can have your computer always print “On the way!” When you type omw. To shrug, just hit the + button at the bottom of the page and add whatever you want.

In the case of a shrug, a simple solution is to have / shrug automatically correct to ¯ \ _ (ツ) _ / ¯. Slack also uses / shrug for ¯ \ _ (ツ) _ / ¯, so it keeps things simple and consistent and makes it so that you never have to remember how to type that ¯ \ _ (ツ) _ / again.


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