The paper describes a new approach to artificial intelligence (AI) and its role in design. This approach argues that AI can be seen as `text', or in other words as a medium for the communication of design knowledge and information between designers. This paper will apply these ideas to reinterpreting an existing knowledge-based system (KBS) design tool, that is, CADET—a product design evaluation tool. The paper will discuss the authorial issues, amongst others, involved in the development of AI and KBS design tools by adopting this new approach. Consequently, the designers' rights and responsibilities will be better understood as the knowledge medium, through its concern with authorship, returns control to users rather than attributing the system with agent status.