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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Lineups Around the Block as AutoCAD 2007 Unveiled

CAD retailers from Round Rock TX to Kent WA swung wide their doors early today as Autodesk launched “AutoCAD 2007: The 3D Edition” precisely one minute past midnight. Although rain was heavy in both states, determined users stood six-deep around the block waving happily at the bright lights of the news cameras.

As the doors swung open, those at the front of the line jumped out of their Mountain Equipment Co-op waterproof sleeping bags and into the warm embrace of store employees. They jumped back again as employees pulled out sharp new box cutters and got to work.

Large notices in red type were bandaged onto the cases of AutoCAD 2007, warning dealerships against opening boxes prior to 12:01am—or face losing dealer contracts come January 31. Employees sliced through the warning signs, the cardboard tops, the individual cases and sometimes right into the CDs.

Most users quickly made their $3,999.00 purchase and ran for their Ford Fairlanes and Mercury Comets, eager to load the software onto their aging desktop computers. Others, however, complained to the watching news cameras that dealers were illegally bundling the software with “required” workstation hardware.

Gazing gleefully upon a row of TV’s reporting the pandemonium, Autodesk representative Walker John enthused, “This is the most successful launch ever! No matter about the sliced CDs; they barely cost anything.” John promised to investigate the bundling complaints, but noted that AutoCAD 2007’s 3D capability is useless without expensive hardware.

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