The condition of information overload has become a common problem in the construction industry and has resulted in a critical ened for the development of intelligent support systems. Material selection occupies a precarious position within this discipline because of the addition of complexity brought about by new and more advanced materials that have become available to designers. The strategies outlined in this paper allow a designer to visualize not only material qualities and behaviour characteristics, but provide the means to distill, organize and select relevant data. The decision matrix is defined by multiple disciplines, incomplete and varied information, and an explosion in the production of materials that have dynamic properties. Emphasis must be placed on distilling and presenting critical information in a comprehensive and visually accessible format.