35 Years of Autodesk and AutoCAD Memories

AutoCAD 86 1.1 disk by Shaan Hurley (c)

In response to my post about AutoCAD turning 35, my email inbox and twitter feed is full and I am so grateful for the response. It is so amazing to read about when you started using AutoCAD and the stories about Autodesk and also the photos. A little known fact is AutoCAD 1.0 wasn’t shipped to customers so the first release was actually AutoCAD version 1.1.

Here is quote from a customer that started on the very first shipping AutoCAD version.

Daniel J. Bounds
Mechanical Designer
Armstrong World Industries / Armstrong Building Products
Lancaster, PA

I started using AutoCAD in 1984 with Release 1.1 on the 5 ¼” floppy disk.  I used it on an original IBM PC with 2 floppy drives.  I think the PC was 2 megahertz or maybe 4.  The AutoCAD program came on 1 disk.  The AutoCAD program disk had to be in Floppy Drive A: and saved .dwg files on Drive B:  If you only had one Floppy Drive.  AutoCAD would prompt you to remove the AutoCAD program disk and insert a disk to save your drawing on.

It’s been a real trip over the years.   I don’t touch AutoCAD much anymore as I’ve been using Inventor more and more over the last 10 years.

A:\ACAD to load in MS/DOS version 1.0

You can email me your story about your use of AutoCAD over the past 35 years, the projects, and possibly include a photo of you and old AutoCAD memorabilia or moments like your CAD office in the 80s.

I will be sharing the photos and stories from AutoCAD users, employees, and partners, and more.

Here is a nice quote from Autodesk Founder John Walker from an email exchange this week:

“I think the fondest moment was COMDEX 1982.  From the first hour of the show, it was clear we had a hit in AutoCAD.  Our ten by ten foot booth in a distant hall of the convention centre was mobbed, and almost everybody working on it began to lose their voice by the end of second day.  In addition to our booth, AutoCAD was running in three other manufacturers' booths, and was a hit there as well, sending traffic to our booth.  Driving back from Las Vegas (we'd rented a big station wagon to haul the stuff, since I wasn't confident my ten year old VW bus could make it; Greg Lutz and I took turns driving), it was clear the challenge was now making the most of the opportunity before us.”

More great memories and feedback from, John Walker to come.