Chapter 1

Introducing AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT


Launching AutoCAD

Creating your first drawing in AutoCAD

The complete picture

The difference between pixels and vectors

Comprehending the Cartesian coordinate system

The DWG file format

This chapter helps ease you into using AutoCAD to create engineering drawings and how to get started. Although it’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed the first time you see AutoCAD, rest assured that you don’t need to learn all of the controls that you see in the default environment to be an efficient user of the program.

After a brief introduction to the program, I take you through an exercise to show you just how easy it can be to use AutoCAD. The exercise is followed up with some key concepts that you should understand when using AutoCAD, including how it differs from most other computer applications.

remember When you’re starting out with AutoCAD, heed this quote from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

Don’t panic!

Launching AutoCAD

The first thing you need to do to start using AutoCAD is to launch the AutoCAD program (well, duh!) and, if necessary, maximize its screen display. AutoCAD has so many tools and palettes that you’ll almost always want to use it in full-screen mode. Follow these steps:

  1. Launch AutoCAD.

    As indicated in the Introduction, I assume that you have a working knowledge of how to use your version of Windows, including ...

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