The design firm of the'90s will have the ability to use the right tool for the right task, permitting tailored resources to be used more effectively. This mean portable, modular and multiuser software running on machines specifically designed for a particular environment with the option to tap other sources. Designers will enter the 21st century using integrated design knowledge-based support systems with knowledge-based inferencing systems, information management systems for text and graphics, a CAD/modelling package, and a flexible user interface with speech recognition, eye tracking and manual input device. Some of these are discussed in this article