AutoCAD is a 2-D and 3-D computer-aided drafting software application used in architecture, construction, and manufacturing to assist in the preparation of blueprints and other engineering plans. Professionals who use AutoCAD are often referred to as drafters.
AutoCAD is developed and marketed by Autodesk Inc. and it was one of the first CAD programs that could be executed on personal computers.
AutoCAD was initially derived from a program called Interact, which was written in a proprietary language. The first release of the software used only primitive entities such as polygons, circles, lines, arcs, and text to construct complex objects. Later, it came to support custom objects through a C++ application programming interface. The modern version of the software includes a full set of tools for solid modeling and 3-D. AutoCAD also supports numerous application program interfaces for automation and customization.
DWG (drawing) is the native file format for AutoCAD and a basic standard for CAD data interoperability. The software has also provided support for Design Web Format (DWF), a format developed by Autodesk for publishing CAD data.
AutoCAD supports a number of APIs for customization and automation. These include AutoLISP, Visual LISP, VBA, .NET and ObjectARX. ObjectARX is a C++ class library, which was also the base for:
products extending AutoCAD functionality to specific fields.
creating products such as AutoCAD Architecture, AutoCAD Electrical, AutoCAD Civil 3D.
third-party AutoCAD-based application.
There are a large number of AutoCAD plugins available on the application store Autodesk Exchange Apps. AutoCAD's DXF, drawing exchange format, allows importing and exporting drawing information.
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