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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

New Open Source HelpRunner Module for REALbasic

The new HelpRunner 1.0 is now available as a free open source module for REALbasic, enabling developers to easily implement native support for Apple Help (on Mac OS X) and Microsoft HTML Help (CHM on Windows) in REALbasic applications.

In Mac OS X Bundle apps, HelpRunner provides easy-to-use methods for registering an Apple Help Book and opening an Apple Help Book in Mac OS X's native Help Viewer.

In Windows apps, HelpRunner provides easy-to-use methods for opening a CHM help file in Microsoft Windows' native HTML Help Viewer.

Much of the Declares code included in HelpRunner has been floating around the REALbasic mailing lists and forums in some form or another over the years, but left out of context and lacking documentation, the piecemeal code snippets often leave new developers bewildered and unsure of how to implement it in their own projects. HelpRunner alleviates that problem by wrapping all of those Declares into a convenient API of methods with easy step-by-step instructions. All code has been optimized and tested for use in this new module. Using HelpRunner, developers of all skill levels can now easily implement native help in their Mac OS X and Windows applications without any prior knowledge of Declares.

To give credit where credit is due, known online contributors of some of the Declares code snippets include Charles Yeomans, Thomas Reed, and Adam Ernst. Surely, there are countless other unknown authors whose expertise helped influence the development of HelpRunner, so please forgive us if your name was not mentioned. A big thanks to everyone in the REALbasic community.


The download includes full source code, an example project, and extensive PDF documentation.

PLEASE NOTE: HelpRunner does NOT create help files for you. In order to use the HelpRunner module to implement support for Apple Help and Microsoft HTML Help in your REALbasic applications, you must already have your help files published in those help formats. Looking for a help authoring solution? Available for both Windows and Mac OS X, HelpLogic is an award-winning help authoring tool that is very easy to use and enables the quick creation of Apple Help and Microsoft HTML Help, as well as many other help formats. For more information or to download a free trial of HelpLogic, visit http://www.ebutterfly.com/helplogic/

If you are interested in contributing code and development efforts to HelpRunner (such as code for implementing help on Linux), please contact Electric Butterfly via our web site.

Best Regards,
Dave Wooldridge
Electric Butterfly, Inc.

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