Unlike early CAD software, which used simple graphics primitives such as lines, circles, squares, and text, AutoCAD initially used a complete structured graphical language. Starting with AutoCAD LT in 1990, the graphics primitives were simplified to increase efficiency.
AutoCAD LT (left) and AutoCAD 2004 (right)
From 1982 until the release of AutoCAD LT in 1990, AutoCAD was available only as a desktop app. It came on floppy disks that were loaded onto a hard drive by a floppy disk drive (FDD) to run on the host computer. This use of the term “deskapp” was a reference to the fact that the software was essentially stand-alone software; it did not require a host application running on the computer’s CPU (central processing unit) to operate. However, starting with the release of AutoCAD LT, the software came on a CD, and AutoCAD could now be run as a web app, without having to be loaded to the host computer’s hard drive. Later, starting with AutoCAD 2010, AutoCAD ran as a web app without needing to be loaded to a computer’s hard drive. AutoCAD LT was developed as a stand-alone product and never ran as a web app.
In 1988, Autodesk introduced AutoCAD LT to replace AutoCAD 1 (1982–1988). This new product was built using the tools and technologies of the time.
In 1990, Autodesk introduced AutoCAD LT 2.0, which retained all features of AutoCAD LT 1.0, with some changes to the user interface. The first release of AutoCAD was AutoCAD LT 1.0 (1990).
Software Development Lifecycle (SDL)
The sequence of events and processes required to create software are defined as a software development lifecycle (SDL). The design and development of AutoCAD was completed as part of the AutoCAD development lifecycle. AutoCAD’s development was started in January 1978 by two engineers at Autodesk, and was made available to the public in December 1982.
One of the aims of the AutoCAD development lifecycle was to make the software available free of charge. This was a revolutionary concept at the time, and when AutoCAD was first released, the CAD industry
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AutoCAD has been implemented as a PostScript printer driver. This allows users to print directly to a printer from within AutoCAD.
AutoCAD Map 2D
AutoCAD Map 2D is a routing tool and feature planner. Like AutoCAD, it is a CAD program but in 2D. It provides many features common to GIS software, such as line, curve and area tools, data management, and importing and exporting of CAD, DEM, and other data. AutoCAD Map 2D can also import and export data in CAD, Map 3D, and other file formats. The Map 2D process utilizes a variety of other Microsoft Windows based software tools, such as Microsoft Excel. Other basic tools like Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint are used to create and edit maps, print maps, and mail the maps to clients.
AutoCAD Map 2D provides a route plan and feature planning tool, including the ability to place points, lines, curves, and polygons. In addition, AutoCAD Map 2D includes routing functionality to generate and print road and other transportation plans. It is a complete routing solution for the transportation planning market and can export such files to CD Rom, spreadsheet software or other formats.
AutoCAD Map 3D
AutoCAD Map 3D is a route planning software that also includes the ability to import and export data in CAD, Map 3D and other file formats. This includes a routing capability that allows the user to print and post a map along with travel directions.
AutoCAD Map 3D features include:
Autoplacement and AutoRemake tools, which make changes to map elements without altering the source file.
AutoRoute, which generates travel directions.
Export feature to CAD, Map 3D or other formats.
Print directions in a paper format or use as a vector map that can be imported into other applications.
Route planners, which provide route planning.
Some of the map features include:
Draw routes with junctions
Draw routes without junctions
Draw one or more routes simultaneously
Layer and symbol routing options
List of AutoCAD/Autodesk add-ons
Comparison of CAD editors for CAE
List of computer-aided design programs
Chris Barsanti, Writing AutoCAD, Prentice Hall PTR, 2003
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What’s New in the?
New Guidance with the 3D tools:
Get the most out of your 3D model with new techniques and content that will help you create better geometry and improve accuracy and comprehension. (video: 4:48 min.)
These features are available for AutoCAD LT and AutoCAD, including the new free AutoCAD LT 2019 Release, AutoCAD LT 2020 Release, and AutoCAD LT 2021 Release. You can also check out the latest releases of the free 3D Design and Drafting apps, AutoCAD 3D and AutoCAD Freehand, on the Autodesk website.
Plus, the new 2019 release of FreeCAD and the latest version of Pro/Engineer are available on the Autodesk website.
Other new features in AutoCAD 2023
Give your customers a convenient way to collaborate with your designs. Publish drawings directly to their own web site, sharing models with a collaborative link and with access permissions. (video: 1:47 min.)
Add and manage printing options for your drawings with new guidance with the Print Settings and Page Setup tool and an improved Print Preview. (video: 3:06 min.)
Make it easier to export your designs to third-party vendors with new support for PDF/X-1a. (video: 1:21 min.)
Add a phone number and email address to an entity with one easy step and see AutoCAD messages on the phone or at the email address. (video: 2:04 min.)
Keep your model locked or unlocked, as needed, when viewing, editing, and printing drawings. (video: 2:15 min.)
Create a secure password to protect your drawing. (video: 1:54 min.)
Check the read-only state of your drawing with a new View toolbar option. (video: 2:45 min.)
Block users or groups from editing objects in your drawings. (video: 1:58 min.)
Share a sheet with another user or a team, or lock sheets for access. (video: 1:45 min.)
Easily share a sheet to a server or the cloud. (video: 2:13 min.)
Modify objects as you draw with new Object Snap tool commands, including one-click snapping to an entity. (video: 3:03 min.)
Rename or reorder tabs and sheets and use Quick Tab Fix to make
Windows® 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10 64-bit
2.16 GHz or faster processor
4 GB RAM
2 GB of available hard drive space
256 MB of available graphics memory (available in Windows® 7, Windows® 8, and Windows® 8.1)