Community (Not Just CAD! - Blog #16)


Apologies for the satellite delay. 2023 started a wee bit ‘off’, so I had to take a bit of time out. I am now back in the groove, so here’s the new blog!


Community is an interesting word with many definitions and connotations. After being in a new home community, in our new home, for just on one year, it got me thinking. What exactly IS a community?


After a bit of interweb searching, I found that Wikipedia gave me the most rounded definition: -


COMMUNITY - Definition

“A community is a social unit (a group of living things) with commonalities such as place, norms, religion, values, customs, or identity. Communities may share a sense of place situated in a given geographical area (e.g. a country, village, town, or neighbourhood) or in virtual space through communication platforms. Durable good relations that extend beyond immediate genealogical ties also define a sense of community, important to their identity, practice, and roles in social institutions such as family, home, work, government, society, or humanity at large. Although communities are usually small relative to personal social ties, "community" may also refer to large group affiliations such as national, international, and virtual communities.


The English-language word "community" derives from the Old French comuneté (Modern French: communauté), which comes from the Latin communitas "community", and "public spirit" (from Latin communis, "common").

Human communities may have intent, belief, resources, preferences, needs, and risks in common, affecting the identity of the participants and their degree of cohesiveness”.


Now a lot of the above definition is pretty deep, and I’m sure we could have many a conversation about it, but my simple definition of a community is this; acceptance, tolerance, and paying it forward.


Community at home

Speaking about the word ‘community’. 2022 was a bit disjointed and weird for me and my wife, Michelle. We moved into our new home in a small village in the East Yorkshire countryside in February 2022. It took us nearly a year to complete the purchase, with seven months in temporary rented accommodation, before the purchase finally went through. We have been accepted by some wonderful neighbours in our new location. Sadly, one of them died recently, and we now make sure that his wife is OK, as she is awaiting hospital treatment. I put out her bins weekly and occasionally pop over one of my legendary banana loaves. It’s not a chore. We see it as one of the little ways of being part of this lovely community that has accepted us.


One of the main reasons we live where we do is that my elderly father is our next-door neighbour. We have kept an eye on him since my mother died in July 2019, and we encouraged him to move here as my sister has lived in the area for the last twenty-four years. Serendipitously, we purchased the property directly behind him, which now means that the family are close to one another. Another little “community-ism”, as I like to now call them.


We are lucky to have such a wonderful community to call home.


The Autodesk Expert Elite Community

Some nights ago, I was working late, and the delightful Donnia Tabor-Hanson (a fellow #AutodeskExpertElite) posted this image on LinkedIn: -


001-EE Recognition.png


The image was from the Autodesk Expert Elite meeting for the end of the year. I was incredibly humbled but proud of my achievement, sharing my name with seven other superb contributors. Due to various commitments, I could not attend the meeting, so this was a bit of a surprise (a nice surprise, I hasten to add)! I always see being able to contribute to the Expert Elite program as my way of paying it forward as a member of such a highly valued community.


Moving along a few weeks, you can imagine my joy to see a package from the USA arriving with this fantastic gift inside: -


002-EE award and Red 5_SMALLER.png


(For those who know me well, I am also a BIG Star Wars fan and Lego geek. My Christmas achievement was building my Red 5 helmet, and the two just looked lovely in the family room in the new house. The Rebel Alliance was also a community, right?).


Geekiness aside, I am humbled by my award and, more importantly, by the Autodesk Community for allowing me to impart my knowledge and expertise to Autodesk users. Receiving such an award makes me want to go further and try harder to ensure the community is empowered to do their best with their Autodesk software.


I started using AutoCAD thirty-four years ago (yep, thirty-four – you did read that right), and I have learnt a lot in that time. New AutoCAD users are just starting their journey, and the Autodesk Community gives them that haven to ask questions and discuss what they need from their software with their peers. As an Expert Elite in that community, it’s always a pleasure to welcome them in, provide them with knowledge, allowing them to move forward.


Again, we are lucky to have such a wonderful community to call home.