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A Big Thanks

Bill Tillman

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Hope this isn't out of line for this forum. But as we enter this last week of 2008 and what will probably be my last week working for this employer (the economic slump is forcing us out of business, we could actually stay in business but the owner can't afford to pay us) I couldn't help but look back with a touch of nostalgia.


I started my career as a draftsman in 1977 on a real drawing board with tape to hold the paper and a pad of sandpaper to sharpen H and HB leads in mechanical pencil holders. I don't know if anyone else remembers the Smoley's Handbook and the TI calculators that were as big as boat anchors, but that's what we used to perform trigonometry to manually figure and draw up compound miters and do other complex detailing. Or the days when CAD first made inroads into normal business and only the big architectural firms could afford a setup. The cost was around $50K as I remember, and that was in 1984 dollars. For that you got one 8 Mghz computer with DOS, 128K of RAM and a plotter, training was an extra fee.


So as I hit the streets again early next year looking for a job, it's nice to know that at least my AutoCAD skills are vastly improved thanks to the great advice and tips offered in this forum. Sure beats hanging around with a bunch of 20-somethings at the community colleges where all I'd probably do is try to chase skirts like I did when I was 20-something.


Happy Holidays to all and may we all have a productive and prosperous New Year.

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I wasn't even born then! :D


You've got a nice story to tell sir. From what I read you seem to have had (or still having) a nice career.


I just started as a drafter and I almost made my first year...:shock:


I hope I can tell a simalar story after a few decenia, ifso I'm pretty sure I can just copy the technical part and adjust the numbers and years. something like this maybe:


""I started my career as a draftsman in 2007 on a real Computer with mouse-keyboerd to click and toggle and a 26" flatscreen to see what I was doing. I don't know if anyone else remembers the CADTUTOR FORUM and its amaizing Users and threads that were as big as boat anchors:shock: , but that's what we used when we got stuck at our job and needed aid to figure out what to do next and draw complex things and do other un understandeble detailing. Or the days when AMAD2017 (Mind aided desing) first made inroads into Universe business and only the big architectural firms could afford a setup. The cost was around $50K(earthdollars) as I remember, and that was in 2015 earthdollars. For that you got one 8 Gigahz Brainchip with MWU(MacWinUx), 128GB of RAM and a 3.5D-plotter, training was an extra download to your chip in your brain which you had to pay for offcource!""


I Thank you all from the bottom of my hart for sharing your knolledge and experiences with us (the next generations).

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Bill: I am truely sorry to hear about your imminent job loss. I too face the same possibility only my employer at least is making an attempt to stick around but I do not hold out much hope as we prepare to enter the new year. Like yourself I too was a board drafter and well remember the skills one had to learn to create the work of art we call a drawing. I did most of my work in ink on linen initially then moved to mylar. Ruling pens, triangles, straightedges, Leroy lettering sets, technical pens were the tools of the trade. Not everyone could draw a map of a city street, develope a sewer plan and profile, or construct a contour map. It was a skill you had to master well or you would find yourself working in the field on a survey crew as a rodman. My first "computer" was an Olivetti-Underwood with a magnetic card that was used to load the program. My how things have changed.


For what it is worth, I've been researching on line job sites and the one I have seen that has the best listings is the Cadalyst magazine job search. You'll find it at http://www.cadalyst.com/jobs. I hope you are able to quickly find a new job. I wish you well. Please remain a participant here at CADTutor as I'm sure you still have a resevoir of knowledge to share. Best of luck in the new year.


Sincere regards,



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