AutoCAD 2011 For Dummies

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AutoCAD 2011 For Dummies by David Byrnes

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It’s amazing to think that AutoCAD came into being more than a quarter of a century ago, at a time when most people thought that personal computers weren’t capable of industrial-strength tasks like CAD. (The acronym stands for Computer-Aided Drafting, Computer-Aided Design, or both, depending on whom you talk to.) What’s equally amazing to the grizzled old-timer writing these words is the fact that many of today’s hotshot AutoCAD users weren’t even born when the program first hit the street! It’s almost as amazing that, 25 years and counting after its birth, AutoCAD remains the king of the microcomputer CAD hill by a tall margin, making it one of the longest-lived PC programs ever. It’s conceivable that the long-term future of CAD may belong to special-purpose, 3D-based software such as the Autodesk Inventor and Revit programs, but for the present and the near future anyway, AutoCAD is where the CAD action is.


AutoCAD has grown more complex over the years, in part to keep up with the increasing complexity of the design and drafting processes that AutoCAD is intended to serve. It’s not enough just to draw nice-looking lines anymore. If you want to play CAD with the big boys and girls, you need to carefully organize the objects you draw, their properties, and the files in which they reside. You need to coordinate your CAD work with other people in your office who will be working on or making use of the same drawings. You need to be savvy about shipping drawings around via the Internet. You may even need to be a little cognizant of working with AutoCAD in three dimensions.


AutoCAD 2011 provides the tools for doing all these things, but it’s not always easy to figure out which hammer to pick up or which nail to bang on first. With this book, you have an excellent chance of creating a presentable, usable, printable, and sharable drawing on your first or second try without putting a T-square through your computer screen in frustration.


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