Reading Usable Help
@UsableHelp on Twitter
Gordon R. Meyer
Help for REALbasic applications
On Mac OS X, the best way to distribute help files is to "bundle" them with your application. A bundle is certain type of folder that appears to be single item, but is really just a container for all of the files the application needs. This lets you more easily install, copy, and throw away applications -- all of the associate files, and the help, are glommed together.
REALBasic is a programming tool that has brought a lot of new applications to the Mac. It's a wonderful product, but it doesn't support the application packaging technology. This means that applications written in REALBasic have to store their help files elsewhere, if they have them at all. I recently found a tool called AppBundler which lets you convert REALBasic-based apps into genuine Mac OS X-style bundles. And the author, Thomas Reed, even provides sample code and options that directly support Apple Help. Wonderful!