Why AutoCAD is still Relevant

AutoCAD is the most popular drafting software in the world – and has been since its creation in 1982. The name is synonymous with computer aided design (CAD) and is known even to those outside of the architecture/engineering/design industry. Until another program arises which makes AutoCAD obsolete, it should continue to dominate the market.

AutoCAD’s bread and butter is 2D drawings. 2D drawings are quicker to produce than 3D drawings, and in most cases 2D drawings are capable of including everything necessary for the typical client’s needs. This results in the least costly option for clients.

AutoCAD also has 3D capabilities. 3D drawings have their place. For instance, a fully rendered perspective of a building can be created in 3D. 3D is also useful for intricate and complex projects.

Many younger architects believe BIM (Building Information Modeling), which is a form of 3D, is the future of CAD software. Revit is a software program designed specifically for BIM, and is produced by Autodesk, who also produces AutoCAD. Revit receives high marks from users for its simplicity.

Currently, 3D and BIM aren’t appropriate for simple floor plans or existing building drawings, so AutoCAD is still relevant. However, if clients come to expect more from even the simplest projects, then drafting service companies will be ready to provide it.


About Michael Devaney

Michael Devaney is a copywriter and blogger specializing in articles and case studies. He can be reached at mkedev@gmail.com.
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3 Responses to Why AutoCAD is still Relevant

  1. Brian M. Curran says:

    Thanks for the guest post Mike!

  2. Dunn says:

    Autodesk will always be relevant, because in the event AutoCAD becomes irrelevant, people will find that Autodesk has bought every other 3d graphics program in existence, from CAD to BIM to movie-making to messing around with 3d objects, not to even mention file management and free 2d/3d export.

    To most, it may seem to be only the very very very proprietary file format that keeps AutoCAD in the running. Non-AutoCAD-using companies will buy 10-15 seats of AutoCAD that they never use, just so there’s no holdup for their drafters when a DWG file comes in or needs to go out.

    To me, who has used some and previewed many different 2d/3d programs, nothing is ever going to beat the speed of AutoCAD. Also, as far as programming, AutoCAD can be as in-depth as you want making it conform to your every wish, or as simple as pie because every command is ultimately text-based. I also use the 3d extensively in AutoCAD, but on my computer, if constraints are needed, I’d better fire up Inventor or something.

    AutoCAD response for the 2d on low-end (for today’s standards) computers is excellent — if you give an AutoCAD drafter something that pauses for 1/4 to 1/2 second every time a command is used, he/she will wonder why you want them to sit around all day doing nothing!

    • Tony says:

      For simples 2D drawings, for simplicity and speed nothing works faster then Microstation ‘J’ followed by AutoCAD 14. From autocad 2007/2008 forward autocad has become far too cumbersome. And the useless yearly upgrade is just a way to screw money from the users. Adding few cosmetics to the menu or worst change few icons,colors, etc, etc etc. is just a waste of time.
      No I am not fond of Autodesk products anymore for long time. I use them if needed but not recommend them to anybody.

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