In most of this book, I focus on 2D drafting, which is by far the easiest way of getting your feet wet with AutoCAD. (Just don't be dripping water on your computer.) And if you're not already in the Drafting & Annotation workspace, I suggest that you use the Workspace Switching button to return to it. After you make the switch to this workspace, AutoCAD displays the interface shown earlier in Figure 2-1.
Like all good Windows programs, AutoCAD has tooltips, those short descriptions that appear in little text boxes when you hover the mouse pointer over a button. In AutoCAD 2012, tooltips display two levels of information. When you hover the mouse pointer over a tool button, you first see a quick identification of the command. If you keep hovering, a longer description of the icon's function, often with a graphic image, appears in an extended tooltip. Helpful as they are when you're starting with AutoCAD, you'll probably want to remove these training wheels sooner or later. You can do so in the Options dialog box. (See the online help for more information.)
The application status bar (see Figure 2-6) appears at the bottom of the AutoCAD screen. The status bar displays and allows you to change several important drawing modes, aids, and settings that affect how you draw and edit in the current drawing. I introduce them in this section.
You can set status bar buttons to display icons or the traditional text labels that will be familiar ...