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computer-aided design

computer-aided design (CAD) or computer-aided design and drafting (CADD), form of automation that helps designers prepare drawings, specifications, parts lists, and other design-related elements using special graphics- and calculations-intensive computer programs. The technology is used for a wide variety of products in such fields as architecture, electronics, and aerospace, naval, and automotive engineering. Although CAD systems originally merely automated drafting, they now usually include three-dimensional modeling and computer-simulated operation of the model. Rather than having to build prototypes and change components to determine the effects of tolerance ranges, engineers can use computers to simulate operation to determine loads and stresses. For example, an automobile manufacturer might use CAD to calculate the wind drag on several new car-body designs without having to build physical models of each one. In microelectronics, as devices have become smaller and more complex, CAD has become an especially important technology. Among the benefits of such systems are lower product-development costs and a greatly shortened design cycle. While less expensive CAD systems running on personal computers have become available for do-it-yourself home remodeling and simple drafting, state-of-the-art CAD systems running on workstations and mainframe computers are increasingly integrated with computer-aided manufacturing systems.
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(computer science)
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

computer-aided design (CAD)

The analysis and/or design, and/or modeling, and/or simulation, and/or layout of building design with the aid of a computer.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (


(Computer-Aided Design) Using high-speed desktop computers to design products. Either a mouse or graphics tablet is used for the physical drawing, and a scanner may be attached for additional input. The output of a CAD system is often electronically transmitted to a computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) system or 3D printer, which builds the objects (see CAD/CAM and 3D printing).

Generic or Specialized
CAD software is available for generic design or specialized uses, such as architectural, electrical and mechanical. The software may also be highly specialized for creating products such as printed circuits and integrated circuits.

Solid and Parametric Modeling
More complex forms of CAD are solid modeling and parametric modeling, which allows objects to be created with real-world characteristics. For example, in solid modeling, objects can be sectioned (sliced down the middle) to reveal their internal structure. In parametric modeling, objects have meaningful relationships with each other (a door must be on a wall, not the floor; holes cannot be drilled too close to the edge, etc.). See wireframe modeling, surface modeling, solid modeling, parametric modeling, graphics and CAE.

Two or Three Dimensions
While 2D CAD programs work for some applications, they are essentially the computer counterpart to hand-drawn objects. In contrast, 3D CAD enables objects to be drawn with sides, top and bottom so they can be manipulated as a whole and viewed from any angle.

From Rivets to Trees
Some CAD software suites can take the finished object and render it as a real-world entity. This building was designed in MicroStation Modeler and rendered in MicroStation MasterPiece from Bentley Systems. (Image courtesy of Bentley Systems, Inc. and Cooper Carry.)
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References in periodicals archive ?
Computer-aided detection in screening mammography: Sensitivity of commercial CAD systems for detecting architectural distortion.
Gao et al., "Deep convolutional neural networks for computer-aided detection: CNN architectures, dataset characteristics and transfer learning," IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging, vol.
Jansen, "Phased searching with neat in a time-scaled framework: Experiments on a computer-aided detection system for lung nodules", Artificial Intelligence in Medicine, 2013.
How widely is computer-aided detection used in screening and diagnostic mammography?
Ulissey, "Screening mammography with computer-aided detection: prospective study of 12,860 patients in a community breast center," Radiology, vol.
This will enable faster and better processing and analysis of images with possibilities such as computer-aided detection in the future.
Computer-aided detection found 198 out of 227 cancers, compared with 199 from double-reading, in the Cancer Research UK study involving 28,000 women.
It has been unclear whether single reading with a computer-aided detection system, which relies on various algorithms to analyze digital images, could match the performance of double reading.
Riverain Medical, Dayton, Ohio, an industry leader and innovator in computer-aided detection (CAD) and diagnostic technologies, has received a Veterans Affairs contract for its OnGuard(TM) Chest X-ray CAD technology.
Nashua-based iCAD Inc., a maker of cancer identification devices that use computer-aided detection (CAD) solutions, recently announced the launch of a clinical study for a new product, Colon CAD.
To supplement this technology, HealthAlliance Hospital also added Computer-Aided Detection, which provides a "second read" of the mammogram by a computer.
Computer-aided detection (CAD) relies on computer software to assist the reader to detect abnormalities by placing prompts over possible abnormal areas on mammograms which may otherwise be overlooked.

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