How important is design? My designer friends say it’s the most important thing. When I see how they translate my wireframes and HTML mock-ups and turn them into pixel-perfect design I see the difference immediately. It changes what was a good idea into something "PROFESSIONAL."
But look at some of the most important, most influential, most profitable sites and you see terrible design and an irreverent approach to pixel-perfect design: IMDB is an industry standard but it's ugly as hell. Craigslist is ugly; and how about Google, eBay and Amazon? The beauty of those sites is in their functionality.