Can you be productive without a CAD Standard?
I have asked this question to many users over the years…
I get the same answer most of the time… “Yes – I can be productive without a CAD Standard”
When I delve into the issue a little more they tend to rethink what they have said.
At first blush, the answer above is correct. I really don’t argue their perspective. They are correct, if they are thinking of a printed hard copy standard that is sitting on their desk or stored as a PDF file on their system.
It is correct because the standard is in their heads and it is a personal standard. Personal standards are developed and used all the time. They are created on the fly, by the person behind the mouse. It is theirs and they love it. They settle into systems of production that work well for them. They define symbols, layers, layouts, definitions and more. All in their heads. All working great on their files, on their PC.
We all do this – it is a natural process. You are not going to make things up as you go forever. You are going to settle into patterns. These patterns become your personal standard. It works great – as long as you are the only person working on the files and projects from start to finish.
But – and here is the bigger issue that I bring up…
If you have to share your work – it begins to fail. You might share your work with only one other person – but wait… they do things differently. They don’t do things the way that you do. They use their personal standard which is different from yours. Now you get frustrated because you have “work with” their files, or you have to “fix” their files. Note: they are thinking the same thing – they are frustrated also.
Expand that to sharing project work inside your firm with a team of players. If they all do whatever they want – it will be chaos. Add on consultants that do not work in your office. Now add on delivery of the files for future use by someone that you don’t even know. It snowballs into totally dysfunctional files.
Enter the CAD Standard. Created to unify the production methods of CAD. Shared by all.
Without it – chaos. With it – the possibility of unity (possible but not guaranteed)