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Departments : Computers & Software

The CAD Zone Law Enforcement Drawing Software

If you need to draw a crime scene or an accident diagram, load these apps into your computer.

March 01, 2004  |  by Bob Davis

How many times have you heard the old saying, "A picture is worth a thousand words"? Well if there is any truth to that old adage, then an easy-to-use 3D drawing application is easily worth a billion words or more to the average cop. The CAD Zone's latest releases of The Crime Zone and The Crash Zone law enforcement drawing applications (now both at version 7.2) are worth a billion words and more. But I promise to control myself.

These easy-to-use drawing programs are great for novice users such as street cops, but they also include all the bells and whistles necessary for the work of more seasoned investigators. Crime Zone and Crash Zone are so user friendly that almost any reasonably intelligent cop can be up and running these programs and creating professional crime scene drawings or accident scene diagrams after just a few lessons.

I know what you're thinking. Who has the time or budget for training lessons? Well, the folks at The CAD Zone have thought of that, too.

Beaverton, Ore.-based The CAD Zone has been producing public safety applications for the last decade, and it understands the needs of law enforcement agencies. Believe me, the folks at The CAD Zone can ease your pain of transitioning from pencil and paper to the age of digital magic.

OK, I bet you're asking, "How the heck are they going to do that? I have problems just getting my PC turned on, let alone finding the skill necessary to make 3D drawings."

Let me walk you through it.

The CAD Zone ships a supplementary CD with each of these programs that's filled with animated instructions and directions and teaches you how to make them work. This is a great tutorial system.

One of the things I've learned since I started teaching is we all learn differently. What works for some, doesn't work for others. But one method that has the most success is repetition. That's the concept behind the tutorial discs that come with these programs. They allow you to play the instructions over and over until you learn how to do it. In addition, these tutorial discs have a great feature that lets you immediately apply your new skills by switching from the training window to application window. Later, if you get stuck, you can just go back to the automated instructor program.

Although I consider myself pretty literate when it comes to running a PC, I've never used a 3D drawing program. I've seen other applications like AutoCAD, but never wanted to spend thousands of dollars nor the hundreds of hours to become an expert with the program. I was convinced that if I didn't use it constantly I'd quickly lose those skills.

That's what makes Crime Zone and Crash Zone so appealing. If I do forget how to manipulate an object, I can always fall back to the tutorial CD ROM and have my answers in a matter of moments.

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