Macros. The FidoCADJ application offers you a quick access to all the electrical components, lets you preview them in a dedicated pane, and insert them into the working environment with the help of just a few clicks. The tool includes these electrical components in the form of various macros or symbols in the libraries. A tree list at the right side of the window enables easy selection of any preset element in the drawing.

Export with effects. FidoCADJ allows you to export your drawings through several file formats, so you can create simple schematics for use. The generated electronic circuits can be printed or exported to PNG, JPG, SVG, EPS, PGF, PDF, or to a script file format. Also, you can apply anti-aliasing and black-and-white effects to the drawings. To export the current drawing, select File → Export. With Black&White option, you can print any visible layer in solid black.

For the bitmap file formats, it may be useful to enable the option Anti aliasing. While exporting to any vectorial format, it will be beneficial to specify the scaling factor. Anti aliasing reduces the annoying effect of the quantisation that is visible especially on diagonal lines.

Customised libraries. As mentioned above, FidoCADJ includes a collection of libraries of symbols and footprints (traditional and SMD) for assistance in your drawings. It allows you to customise and manage these by defining new symbols and libraries with the luxury of modifying the existing ones. In some specific cases you can also replace the existing libraries with the external ones.

An effective 2D design tool
Summarising, we can regard FidoCAD as an effective tool for designing electronics. Its intuitiveness and handy set of features make it an easy-to-use and learning tool for hobbyists. Moreover, being free, Java-based and multi-platform, it can be of great use.

But it need not be considered uniquely for electronics design as customisation of its libraries can prepare it for any type of 2D drawing and for many other situations, provided those specific libraries can be made available.

FidoCadJ is the official drawing tool of ElectroYou, an Italian social network for electronics. It is a free GPL Licensed software tool that can be downloaded for free at http://fidocadj.sourceforge.net/. You can participate in the forums and blogs related to this tool at http://sourceforge.net/p/fidocadj/discussion/997486

Software download: click here


The author is a technical journalist at EFY

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