AutoCAD’s Pareto Principle – as with most modern software programs – 80% ( & More) of what you need,
can be achieved with 20% (and/or much less) of AutoCAD’s Endless-Monstrous Functionality. All good?
Not necessarily:
Not every CAD User will Select his/her 25 pieces of functionality needed for delivering the Goods and MASTER those ..!.!..!!!

AutoCAD’s Pareto Principle

The Pareto Principle will comply if the Software program is properly used, assuming the knowledge is average or higher, the work is done in some kind of a (CAD) Standard dictating some basics like Layering (using ByLayer Properties) and  the right tools for the right job are carefully selected (Like when to use a Block and when – a Group).

AutoCAD's Pareto Principle

AutoCAD’s Pareto Principle & The Right Tools for the Right Job

Assuming that AutoCAD permits the user to use any command at any time, Blocks and Groups are a very precise test-case for evaluating whether a great result is going to be achieved or a crime against humanity is about to be committed.

Blocks VS. Groups

Blocks and Groups might confuse the CAD User by being too similar and by having so much in common:

  • Both are Saved within the Drawing File
  • Both Can be Named by the User and/or both might be anonymous
  • Both can be edited
  • When not in use, Blocks / Empty Groups should be purged from the File’s memory.

Yet, they are so different…

  • Texts and Dimensions should be avoided when creating a Block – while in the case of a Group – Those Objects are very much recommended
  • A block behaves as any other object (can be selected/deselected, exploded [one-way-ticket]) that means it is a whole entity. A Group can be Selected as a Group (Group Selection On) or as its components (Group Selection Off) making it very convenient for Geometric Manipulations (Editing)
  • A Block should be used for Library Elements (Door & Windows, Nuts & Bolts, Tables & Chairs, Trees, TV Sets, Pipes, Etc.)
  • Groups fit perfectly as A named or Unnamed Selection Set for Geometric Manipulations (Such as Mirror – respecting the  MIRRTEXT=0 Setting)
  • Blocks should be created in Layer 0 so later, when placed in a specific Layer they will inherit the Layer Properties
  • Groups have no connection to Layers whatsoever – They Layers are used in the same manner as any Selection Set is Created.

Any user that has been using blocks for Geometric Manipulations is aware at some point of the fact that Mirroring a Block containing annotations is a malpractice while not so many know that doing the same utilizing a Group will be a Best Practice and get great results .


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