Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody
I hate to find myself agreeing with "OzExige" as they seem to spend most of their time complaining about everything, but they do have a point.
I haven't used AutoCAD since Windows 95 days, but it *was* a dinosaur in so many ways. Even when it finally went to a GUI environment, (many years after the last DOS user died of carpal tunnel syndrome), it was the thinnest of shells over what was still essentially a CLI product that relied on HotKeys and Menus for literally every function.
Anyone care to fill in a bit of the background about what it's like to use AutoCAD today?
Yeah, I learned on AutoCAD 12 in DOS, so I know all about the hell that it was. Still, hot keys are great, and way faster than using endless menus. Basically, 12 was in DOS and Mac, and they killed MAC when they went to windows with version 13 (a slow version of the mac 12) and version 14 (more in line with what the mac version was).
Right now, AutoCAD is a pretty solid program, and it can do a lot of great drafting. Still though, a lot of the bugs in the program still haven't been worked out. Despite all of the development, I still get "lines not coplanar" notes despite both being at z = 0, it still crashes, and it still changes its own preferences randomly.
Basically, AutoCAD is a monster in the industry, Autodesk knows it, and they seem to be more interested in tweaking their own software to create reasons for clients to upgrade all the time rather than to win new users, which they don't actually have to do.
Between these issues, and the lack of Mac support, people did flee to other software. I use Vectorworks at my office for some projects, and it is a solid product. For somethings I prefer ACAD, but VW doers excel a lot. Also, ArchiCAD has a lot of supporters. Still though, you have to deal with consultants who all use ACAD.
I was one of the many people that thought that when Apple went with OS X on Intel we'd see CAD make a comeback, since it would be easy for them to do so. Their foot dragging has been pretty sad, and has led to even more adoption to alternatives. Seriously, I doubt that VW and ArchiCAD would be that well known, if even existent, if Autodesk stayed with MAC. They pretty much created the market for their own competition.
That said, CAD is seen as a product that will slowly die, as BIM is all the rage. VW and ArchiCAD have long had BIM functions, and Autodesk is working hard to push Revit as the future. Like AutoCAD, it has its own pains to working with it, so its not perfect, but I am curious to see if it will be ported over as well. One product at a time, I guess.