Thank you so much for the awesome response!
I hope “dribbble decoration” wasn’t offensive. I agree with you–much of what goes live gets negotiated and overthought past the point of the original inspired aesthetic.
I would love to see the gap shrink between functional and aspirational dashboards. As d3 and other data viz tools grow in popularity, I think we’ll begin to see frameworks that offer more visually rich methods of showing data. As that happens, that gap will shrink.