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The development of AutoCAD was initiated by architects and engineers from the California-based architectural firm of Snell and Wilmer. Their work, which was focused on building design, included 3D visualization and draftsmanship and began in the early 1980s. Snell and Wilmer wanted a software product that could rapidly produce drawings and documents from architectural design and specifications in a cost-effective manner. They were also interested in a solution that would allow multiple designers to interact in a collaborative fashion. In response, they commissioned Autodesk, a small company, to develop a new CAD application with these features.

In 1982, Autodesk began to develop a new program for architects and engineers. The initial design specifications were provided by Snell and Wilmer. Autodesk was asked to produce a program that would be used by a team of three or four people simultaneously. Autodesk determined that a graphics-based application would be needed to meet the design specifications. The program would have to be able to work on the small desktops of 1980s microcomputers and be able to be viewed by a team of four people. The application also had to be able to rapidly and accurately compute and draw architectural shapes, and the draftsmanship features needed to allow users to create architectural designs without a great deal of drafting experience. At the time, the common application for this type of work was the pen-based system of IBM, which could not create large, detailed drawings quickly and accurately.

In 1982, the architectural firm of Snell and Wilmer, Inc., hired Autodesk to develop a CAD program. The company was a small, San Francisco-based computer software company, founded in 1979 by a team of three former employees of General Electric. The company’s computer software development staff was based in San Francisco and Palo Alto, California, and the small firm sold software to many small and mid-size architectural and engineering firms in the United States.

In the first year of development, Autodesk’s engineers spent most of their time trying to solve the problem of drawing architectural elements. They spent considerable time and effort trying to find ways to develop tools to accurately and quickly create architectural drawings. This work included developing 3D and 2D building models to test the drawing features. Snell and Wilmer were then able to provide some of the designs used in the AutoCAD product.

Initially, Autodesk was working with a Silicon Graphics (SGI) PDP-11 minic

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The STL File system or like the Modernized STL File system, allows non-technical users to edit drawings. Users can create and edit STL files with a graphical user interface, while technical users can do so with the existing scripting command-line interface (CLI). The popular C++ compiler can be used to develop AutoLISP extensions for AutoCAD.

File formats

AutoCAD has support for a wide variety of design standards, including the following common file formats.

Open CAD file formats
DWG (AutoCAD Drawing) is the official format used to store CAD drawings. DWG uses the proprietary AutoLISP programming language.
DWF (AutoCAD Web Format) is an XML-based file format designed for web delivery of AutoCAD drawings and is the file format supported by Adobe Flash and PDF (Acrobat) viewers. A DWF file can contain both DWG and DXF files.
DXF (AutoCAD Drawing Exchange Format) is the official standard format for CAD drawings, and is based on the DGN (Drawing) file format from Autodesk. DXF does not support parametric objects.
STL (Stereolithography) is a simple file format commonly used to store STL models for 3D printing. STL is used to create, edit and render 3D models.

SIG (Standard Interchange Format) is a simple text file format for sharing design documentation. SIG is used for exchanging data across applications.
ILT (Interchange Format) is a simple text file format for exchanging data between applications.
F2D (FoX 2 Design) is a proprietary CAD file format used to store AutoCAD geometry, coordinates, parametric properties, and several other parameters.

Viewer file formats
DGN is used by AutoCAD for storing technical drawings, and is the file format supported by Adobe Flash and PDF (Acrobat) viewers.
DCL (Direct Chalkline) is a simple text file format used for storing technical drawings.
DAE (Data Access Exchange) is the proprietary format used by AutoCAD for storing and exchanging model data.

Encoding standard formats
.DWG (AutoCAD Drawing)
.DWF (AutoCAD Web Format)
.DCL (Direct Chalkline)

Encoding formats
SIG (Standard Interchange Format)
F2D (FoX 2 Design)

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Angelique S. Chengelis

The Detroit News

Detroit — A federal jury has convicted former contractor Andrew Aquilina and former lead contractor Clinton Johnson of bribing Michigan state employees to fix a contract to repair the State of Michigan’s under-construction portion of the Mackinac Bridge in 2007, the government said Thursday.

Johnson, who was convicted in August of conspiring to pay off public officials, also was convicted of bribing a public official. Aquilina, who was convicted of conspiring to pay off a public official, will be sentenced June 11. Johnson’s sentencing is set for June 5.

Both were arrested on Feb. 15, 2012, the last day of the FBI’s investigation of the bridge contract.

In 2007, Michigan was in the midst of construction of the interstate bridge that connects Detroit and Mackinac Island. At the time, Johnson was employed as a project manager for Kirkton Engineering & Environmental, Inc., a subsidiary of the Genesee-Mackinac Bridge Authority. Johnson worked on a design team for the bridge project, which included the main span of the bridge.

Aquilina was an employee of the City of Detroit at the time of his arrest.

Johnson’s attorney, Sean Pearson, said after Thursday’s verdict that they will appeal.

“We are very confident that we will ultimately prevail and that Mr. Johnson will be released,” he said.

Aquilina’s attorney, Scott Rosenwasser, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Aquilina and Johnson, as employees of the State of Michigan, agreed in the conspiracy to pay the unnamed state employees a total of $1.4 million, the government said.

The conspiracy started in 2007 when Johnson approached Aquilina and asked him to bribe a public official, including then-Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee, to get Michigan state workers to help fix a bridge design that Aquilina was working on, the government said. Johnson used his influence as a project manager to ensure the State of Michigan paid Aquilina’s company, Unisys Corporation, to fix the bridge design, the government said.

Aquilina arranged a meeting with Godbee, the government said. Johnson and Aquilina agreed to pay Godbee

What’s New in the AutoCAD?

Project-based drafting: Add project templates and automatically reference related information as you work. Create and incorporate drawings automatically based on drawings created by other users. (video: 1:40 min.)

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AutoCAD is one of the world’s most-used 3D CAD tools, used in industries worldwide. AutoCAD is available in two editions: AutoCAD LT and AutoCAD LT Premium. AutoCAD LT is ideal for small business and individual users. AutoCAD LT Premium includes advanced features, unlimited support and professional support. You can learn more about AutoCAD LT and AutoCAD LT Premium at

Live from AutoCAD World 2019

Live from AutoCAD World 2019

AutoCAD’s latest features and enhancements were featured in AutoCAD World 2019, which took place November 13-16 in Orlando, Florida. The conference featured the latest innovations from industry leaders and the latest in AutoCAD technology. The 16 tracks covered everything from usability to productivity and drafting, CAD systems, design collaboration, and much more.

AutoCAD World 2019 exhibitors included Autodesk, Cadence Design Systems, Christie Digital, Cosini Systems, EDAW, Gerber Technology, Harmonic, Huntington Technologies, Inpsred, and Leica Geosystems. AutoCAD World 2019 attendees included more than 1,000 professionals, students, educators, and government employees.

AutoCAD VIP and AutoCAD World 2019 VIP attendees participated in several special AutoCAD World 2019 presentations. Videos of presentations are available at

Supporting Resources:

To learn more about AutoCAD, visit

System Requirements For AutoCAD:

PC: Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8 (32-bit or 64-bit), 8.1 (32-bit only)
Mac: OS X 10.6.8 or higher
Linux: Ubuntu 14.04+ or Fedora 20+
Amazon Fire TV/tablet: Android OS 4.4 or higher
Android Phones & Tablets: Android OS 5.0+
-Android 5.0+ devices have graphics emulation with low graphics settings enabled
-Requires a compatible mobile/tablet device