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I am running Mac OS X 10.5. How can I enter Chinese characters using Ping Yin?
Do I need to install some software?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Go to System Preferences > Personal > International > Input Menu and check the appropriate input method(s). You can then use the menu bar or Cmd-Spacebar to switch input methods. (Corrected for Leopard names.)

You may need to use the install DVD to install the appropriate fonts and input methods, although IIRC they are installed by default.

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An alternative option to what @geekosaur suggested would be using IMKQIM. It costs 19,99$ but lets you typeset 10000 hanzi for free (if I remember it right).

For an overview on what else can be set up specific to the chinese language on Mac OS X, also have a look at the excellent [chinese mac] website of Yale university.

Also, if you happen to work on a recent MacBook Pro model, you could enable writing on the Trackpad as an input method in the system preferences.

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You should try out the FIT input method (see (It's Chinese though). I personally think it's better than Mac OS X's default/built-in Chinese input method.

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