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As you can see, I've just launched AutoCAD 2011, and I'm sitting in the default Drawing1 file. I'd like to take this opportunity to talk about the AutoCAD commands themselves. We're going to look at the workflow behind each command, because you know what, they all work the same way. In this lesson, we're going to explore the anatomy of a command. I'm going to start by moving up to the Draw Panel. I'll click to launch the Line command. Now, take a look at this area at the bottom of the screen. This is called the command Line. This is where AutoCAD speaks to us and tells us what it needs to complete the command.
Right now it wants me to specify first point. So I'm going to left-click a point on my screen to start my line and then I'll click a few more points. There we go. Take a look at the command Line now. I can specify another point or I've got some text here in between these brackets. The choices between the brackets are sub-options. And a sub-option is just an additional feature that can be accessed within the current command. Now, there's two ways to access a sub-option. One way is by using your keyboard. You can type the capitalized letter of the option.
For instance, if I wanted to undo one segment, I can type u and hit Enter. Let's back up one more. I'll type u and hit Enter. Now, another way we can access sub-options is using the right-click menu. If I right-click, I can see the sub-options right here. Once again, to back up a segment, I'll select Undo. I'm going to right-click again and then I'll select Close to close this shape. Most AutoCAD commands contain additional sub -options and we can access them either way. Let's look at one more thing. I'm going to move back up and relaunch the Line command.
I'll pick a few more points on screen. If you want to cancel out of any running command, press the Esc key on your keyboard and AutoCAD will stop that command in its tracks. Now, since you're just starting out with this program, I can't emphasize enough the importance of keeping an eye on the command Line. Remember, this is where AutoCAD is telling you what it needs. Quite often, beginners struggle because they're entering one thing, when AutoCAD is expecting something else. So if you're having problems, the command Line is one of the first places to look. Don't worry, once you get the hang of it, you'll soon learn that all the commands essentially work the same way.
And soon you'll be anticipating what AutoCAD needs before it even asks for it.
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