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Inside Macintosh: Apple Guide Complete / Part 3 - Integrating Guide Files

Chapter 9 - Apple Guide API

You can provide the user with context-sensitive help from within your application by using the Apple Guide application programming interface (API). This application programming interface is a set of functions that allow you to start up Apple Guide, access and work with guide files--all from within your application. An additional set of functions is provided in the AGFile library; you can use these functions to get information about guide files. You should read this chapter if you are a developer who wants to integrate Apple Guide with your application.

Usually the user controls when help is displayed by choosing a guide file from the Help menu. However, using the Apple Guide API, you can make help available from a button in a dialog box or offer to provide help to the user if the user repeatedly makes a mistake. For example, you can display to the user a sequence that is directly related to the task the user is performing.

This chapter begins by introducing you to the types of tasks your application can accomplish using the Apple Guide API and AGFile library. Then it gives a complete description of all of their functions.

Chapter Contents
Determining Whether Apple Guide Is Available
Starting Up Apple Guide
Determining Which Guide Files Are Available
Opening and Closing Guide Files
Working With Open Guide Files
Getting Information About Guide Files
Installing and Removing Coachmark Handlers
Installing and Removing Context Check Handlers
Application-Defined Routines
Providing Object Locations for Coachmarks
Summary of Apple Guide API
Data Types
Result Codes

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© Apple Computer, Inc.
12 JUL 1996