AutoCAD 2002 Bible

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In This Part


Chapter 1


Starting to Draw


Chapter 2


Opening a Drawing


Chapter 3


Using Commands


Chapter 4


Specifying


Coordinates


Chapter 5


Setting Up a Drawing



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CHAP



TER


Starting to Draw


Learning AutoCAD is a bit like trying to decide which came first—the chicken or the egg. On one hand, you need to know many basics before you can start drawing. On the other hand, it can be very difficult to understand those basics if you haven’t had the experience of drawing something using a computer. In this chapter, you resolve this problem by drawing a simple rectangle in AutoCAD. The next few chapters then fill you in on basic information you need to move on to more complex drawings. By experiencing the drawing process first, the initial learning curve will be easier and smoother.

Getting Acquainted with AutoCAD


AutoCAD, created by Autodesk, is the most widely used technical drawing program anywhere, with more than 2.6 million registered users. According to Autodesk, CAD stands for computer-aided design, but can also stand for computer-aided drafting or drawing.


The first version of AutoCAD came out in 1982 running under DOS. AutoCAD was the first significant CAD program to run on a desktop computer. At the time, most other technical drawing programs ran on high-end workstations or even mainframes. AutoCAD’s success has been attributed to its famous open architecture — many source code files in plain text (ASCII) files that you can easily customize and programming languages (such as AutoLISP and Visual Basic for Applications) designed especially so that the end user can program AutoCAD.

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