Which character code is that?

Word: how to find the character code used for a particular letter or symbols.

Last week we talked about the Unicode v7.0 symbols and how to use symbols in Word.

With over 100,000 characters in the Unicode specification, it’s important to know the character code number for the symbol you want.

That raises the question, how can you find out the Unicode character code for a symbol already in a Word document. You might open a Word document and want to use that symbol elsewhere.

Of course, you can copy the symbol and paste into another document, but it’s sometimes handy to know the code number itself. Happily there’s a simple, but not obvious, way to do it.

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In an Office document, select the symbol you’re interested in then choose Insert | Symbol | More Symbols. Yes, it’s called Insert Symbol but the dialog box will open to the pre-selected symbol and show you the character code.

http://img.office-watch.com/ow/Insert%20Symbol%20shows%20selected%20character.png image from Which character code is that? at Office-Watch.com

This trick is useful not just for getting the character code. You can also use this method to find similar characters to the one selected.

Unicode is made up of various Code Charts for different types of characters. Many of the code charts are for different language scripts but others are for symbols. Symbols on a particular topic are often grouped together because they were added to the Unicode specification at the same time.

In the image above you can see that the weightlifter symbol is among other sporting icons. Jumping to that icon lets you see other related icons.

Alas, this doesn’t always work because related symbols can be in separate groups.  Another group of related symbols may be added later but will be placed, numerically, somewhere else in the long Unicode list.