Can AutoCAD files reference external files or drawings?
the ability to reference external AutoCAD drawings, or "XRef" which allows you to work on smaller parts of a whole design rather then one massive file that runs slowly.
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"An everyday program in the office"
What do you like best?
While AutoCAD may seem intimidating at first, it is actually a very logically set up and self explanatory program that you can gain a basic understanding of in a day. My personal favorite is the ability to reference external AutoCAD drawings, or "XRef" which allows you to work on smaller parts of a whole design rather then one massive file that runs slowly. The ability to create "blocks" is also highly useful, as it allows you to create a standard symbol such as a logo/arrow/detail/etc that you can bring into any drawing you create without having to redraw the item over, which also allows for consistency throughout designs. Also, the different colors of lines correspond to different line weights when printed, allowing for the creation of clear and easy to read documents and good line hierarchy.
What do you dislike?
Troubleshooting problems on AutoCAD can be quite difficult, with even the most experienced users in the office being stumped. Also, this program has a habit of crashing quite regularly. The hatch tool in particular has some issues, and has great difficulty creating a hatch once there is deviation from a standard shape.
Recommendations to others considering the product
This program is a well established industry standard and allows for consistent information throughout a singular office or spread over many offices and locations. The program is easy enough for a new user to learn the basics quickly but also allows for users to become more advanced in creating custom work in the program, both 2D and 3D.
What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?
AutoCAD provides a great, technical program for creating exact drafting design and construction documents. It provides a concise and legible way to display surveying information, utilities, existing conditions, etc., in a digital and printable format. AutoCAD documents can also be exported as PDFs and then rendered in programs such as Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop and allowing for the creation of clear graphics and documents for display or presentation.
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