Custom number format preferences for OS X 10.5 16:33 on Saturday

At some point in the recent years Apple (once again) demonstrated their ignorance of non-US markets by revamping the International Preferences in a way that prevents us “international users” to have exactly the formats we prefer. One of the most glaring changes was to remove the capability of specifying custom number formats.

If you’re one of those few who seek for total control over your thousands separators and decimal separators, I urge you to try my Number Format Preferences application (at your own risk, of course).

It is an AppleScript Studio application, and all it does is to let you specify the separators you want to use and then set the formats using the standard OS X defaults system.

If you prefer the terminal over beautiful, serene, clearly layed out windowed applications, you can do this yourself with the following command:

defaults write -g AppleICUNumberSymbols -dict 0 ',' 1 ' ' 10 ',' 17 '.'

This will:

  • Set the decimal separator for numbers to a comma (key 0)
  • Set the thousands separator for numbers to a space (key 1)
  • Set the decimal separator for currency to a comma (key 10)
  • Set the thousands separator for currency to a period (key 17)

Any feedback on the application is welcome.

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