Alexis Madrigal: One thing I’ve always loved about the Pinterest interface is that when you hit the button to pin something, it breaks the page down into its parts. How much do you think the design of the interface has defined what Pinterest does?

Evan Sharp: My background industry is design—I code a lot, too—but there’s been this narrative of design in technology becoming more prominent. What the UI enables on Pinterest is this human activity that ends up creating a great database. And it’s that knitting of front-end and back-end abilities that will power our products. We’re not going to be exclusively the best engineering company—though we have some the best engineers—and we’re not going to be the world’s prettiest, best designed company. What’s interesting is how those things interact, over and over, and back and forth. That’s where the magic comes out. That’s where the best new products are coming out on the Internet.

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