Some commonly-used Alt code symbols include Alt+1 for a smiley face, Alt+13 or Alt+14 for music notes, Alt+224 for the alpha symbol and Alt+225 for the beta symbol. Others include Alt+128 through Alt+165 for alphabetical characters with various accents, or Alt+226 through Alt+253 for various Greek mathematical symbols, including pi.
The Alt code feature is available for use on Windows computers. To use an Alt code, first activate the number pad on the keyboard by pressing the Num Lock key. Next, hold the Alt key and type the corresponding numbers to the Alt code being used. For instance, to type a heart symbol, hold Alt and then type 3 on the number pad. To type a copyright symbol, hold Alt and quickly type 169.
All regular alphanumerical keys have a corresponding Alt code, which is helpful for users who need to work around a broken key. Alt codes Alt+48 through Alt+59 produce 0 through 9, while Alt+33 through Alt+47 produce all regular punctuation marks. Alt+65 through Alt+90 produce all uppercase letters, while Alt+97 through Alt+122 produce all lowercase numbers.
While Mac computers lack Alt codes, they do have an extended keyboard feature enabling Mac users to use many of the same symbols that Windows users access. Users must activate the extended keyboard through the Systems Preferences menu before they can type characters from it.