Equipped with the right applications, a computer can be of great help in virtually any domain of activity. When it comes to designing and precision, no other tool is as accurate as a computer. Moreover, specialized applications such as AutoCAD give you the possibility to design nearly anything ranging from art, to complex mechanical parts or even buildings.
Suitable for business environments and experienced users
After a decent amount of time spent installing the application on your system, you are ready to fire it up. Thanks to the office suite like interface, all of its features are cleverly organized in categories. At a first look, it looks easy enough to use, but the abundance of features it comes equipped with leaves room for second thoughts.
Create 2D and 3D objects
You can make use of basic geometrical shapes to define your objects, as well as draw custom ones. Needless to say that you can take advantage of a multitude of tools that aim to enhance precision. A grid can be enabled so that you can easily snap elements, as well as adding anchor points to fully customize shapes.
With a little imagination and patience on your behalf, nearly anything can be achieved. Available tools allow you to create 3D objects from scratch and have them fully enhanced with high-quality textures. A powerful navigation pane is put at your disposal so that you can carefully position the camera to get a clearer view of the area of interest.
Various export possibilities
Similar to a modern web browser, each project is displayed in its own tab. This comes in handy, especially for comparison views. Moreover, layouts and layers also play important roles, as it makes objects handling a little easier.
Sine the application is not the easiest to carry around, requiring a slightly sophisticated machine to properly run, there are several export options put at your disposal so that the projects itself can be moved around.
Aside from the application specific format, you can save as an image file of multiple types, PDF, FBX and a few more. Additionally, it can be sent via email, directly printed out on a sheet of paper, or even sent to a 3D printing service, if available.
To end with
All in all, AutoCAD remains one of the top applications used by professionals to achieve great precision with projects of nearly any type. It encourages usage with incredible offers for student licenses so you get acquainted with its abundance of features early on. A lot can be said about what it can and can't do, but the true surprise lies in discovering it step-by-step.
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At its basic level, AutoCAD is a computer-based drawing and drafting tool. It allows users to make simple drawings and measurements, as well as more complex designs using 2D and 3D drafting techniques, such as line, plane and 3D solids.
AutoCAD’s goals are to capture, edit and store information, and to render it to create 2D or 3D drawings or other data visualisations. It is suitable for architectural design, mechanical, electrical and civil engineering, furniture, signage, retail, packaging, product design, home improvement, digital content creation and 3D graphics. It can be used for technical documentation, technical illustration, product support and training.
Why use AutoCAD?
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Software for Windows
AutoCAD is available on Microsoft Windows, macOS and Linux. The most current version is AutoCAD 2020.
AutoCAD is available as a single user version for desktop computers, as a multi-user version (suite) for servers and as an online subscription service (AutoCAD 365 subscription). Costs start from approximately £90 to £480 per user per year depending on the number of users in a site, their geographical area, whether one or many users are connected to the internet, if they are on desktop computers or server versions, and which options are selected.
AutoCAD free trial versions are available for Windows and Mac, as well as for AutoCAD online subscription, from Autodesk.
AutoCAD subscriptions are payable monthly for desktop computers and bi-monthly for servers. The subscription also includes access to the online service AutoCAD 365. Other subscription options include the AutoCAD Vault, which allows users to create and store projects for their own use and the Pro subscription that allows users to create, edit and publish their own work online.
See the different AutoCAD subscription options here.
As a drafting tool, AutoCAD has the following applications and uses:
2D drafting: Drafting and design tools for creating and editing 2D drawings. These may include line, arc, polyline, circle, spline, arc and segment tools as well as drawing and annotating tools. The line tool allows users to create, edit and display linear objects such as
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Types of drawing
AutoCAD uses DXF as its native file format, allowing for the interchange of drawings with other programs and an easy conversion from legacy formats, such as DGN (Drawing Interchange Format), or even computer-aided design formats such as Parasolid.
DXF files can be printed, sent by email, or added to web sites.
Preparation for making a drawing
The Workbench provides tools to view, edit, and optimize DXF files. Its main window shows the layout of the drawing. The drawing area and the drawing ruler (dotted grid and dashed grid) are in the lower left. The first three toolbars on the top (from left to right) are the Properties tool, the Size/Position/Rotate tool, and the Drawing/Units/Plane/Rotation/Paths tool. There is a legend for each tool and it can be switched on or off.
The Properties tool, shown in Figure 1, is used to change properties of a tool. Properties include, for example, the tool’s status (it is enabled or disabled), its tool type (ruler, polyline, etc.), its active plane, if it has one, and its active axis. This tool is context-sensitive and its meaning is displayed in the menu that appears when it is clicked on. The main window shows the current properties of the active tool. The Properties tool may be used for other purposes, as explained in the next section.
The Size/Position/Rotate tool is used to resize, move, or rotate the selected tool. The drawing area is not restricted to the current design size. The default scale of 1:1 is rarely used, especially in large drawings.
The Drawing/Units/Plane/Rotation/Paths tool is used to place objects on a 3D surface. The drawing area can be rotated, and scales can be used to affect the size of the surface, as well as the angle of the bottom edge of the drawing area.
Objects can be placed on the surface of a drawing in several ways:
You can right-click (Control+click on a Mac) an object and select one of the following options:
the Draw tool, which is used to trace an arc or other path,
the Freehand tool, which is used to sketch an object,
the Push tool, which is used to push a face, edge
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Click « File » > « Import ».
Select « File Import Wizard »
Select « Export model to data format »
Select « DXF »
Click « OK ».
Change the settings.
Click « File » > « Save »
You will need to save the file as a dxf file.
You can use the SmartView command line tool.
In the steps below, I am assuming you have a dxf file.
Close or quit Autocad.
Open a command window and go to the location where you saved your dxf file.
Change to the directory where you saved the file.
smartview /autodesk /a dxf [filename] /o [outputfilename]
smartview /autodesk /a mydxffile /o myoutputfile.dxf
The [filename] must match the file name you used when you saved the file.
The [outputfilename] can be whatever you like, but I typically use the same name as the [filename].
This will create the.dws file and the.dxf file.
The.dws file is a text file that contains the data needed to recreate the model in SmartView.
The.dxf file contains the model.
The Dxf Editor Pro program will allow you to import DXF models and create a key for every element.
It will allow you to make changes to the key during or after the process.
Here is an excerpt from the website
Another benefit of using Dxf Editor Pro is that it allows you to export the model back to dxf and modify the key as you see fit before running the model through Smartview.
Evolution of thermo- and volumetric hysteresis in a photothermally active liquid crystal.
We examine the interplay between thermal and volume driven states of self-assembly in a two-dimensional micropatterned thin-film of a photothermally responsive liquid crystal. We report the discovery of a reentrant transition between a thermal-driven and a volume-driven state of self-
What’s New in the AutoCAD?
(video: 1:15 min.) Markup Assist:
If you’re working on a sheet that has several drawings on it, Markup Assist will help you keep track of what you’ve already drawn.
Editing functions with Annotations and Review
One of the most-requested feature from our users is the ability to check their drawings and keep track of edits. You can now check the history of your drawing while annotating parts of the drawing, and even while checking out annotations and review history, you can still make edits to the drawing. These enhancements are a result of feedback from our community of registered users.
You can also import your drawing history into your Revit project, and check it out alongside your Revit project files.
User-defined Parametric Curves:
AutoCAD 2019 introduced user-defined parametric curves to enable you to create geometric curves from a points collection. AutoCAD 2023 adds parametric curves in the style of 2D geometry, including rings, ramps, ramps with rings, and parallel ramps.
Create multiple rings and ramps to create complex 3D curves and surfaces. Now you can create parametric curves that look and behave like 2D geometry, such as circular rings and ramps.
Add any data fields or parameters to your curves and ramps. From circles to ellipses, complex geometry, and more, you can edit and view the data from any parametric curve.
Add parametric curves to existing objects, and link them to other object properties. Now you can create parametric curves from geometric objects, such as complex 3D surface patches and ellipses, and use them to store data or dimensions, such as diameters, radii, and the angle of a surface patch.
Revisit and Revit Architecture
Revit and Revit Architecture features are now fully accessible in AutoCAD 2020 and in the latest 3D functionality of AutoCAD. You can create or edit Revit elements directly from your AutoCAD drawing, whether you’re working in a native or web-based application.
Revit users can import 2D CAD files directly into a project and view them together with the Revit project files.
With the Release Preview version of AutoCAD 2023, the latest 3D functionality will be available in AutoCAD as a feature update. This latest release includes the ability to
1. Windows 10, Windows 8.1 (64-bit)
2. Intel i5 or equivalent
3. 2 GB RAM or equivalent
4. 8 GB free disk space
5. 4 GB of VRAM (4 GB is recommended)
6. 30 MB of VRAM (5 GB is recommended)
7. DirectX 11
8. USB port (the joystick requires a USB port to operate)
9. 64-bit OpenGL Driver and Hardware
10. 720p or