If you still need convincing that 'design' is more than just window-dressing then take a look at this. The Child Vision glasses have just won the Visitor Vote - ie voted by members of the general public - at the Design Museum's Designs of the Year 2013.
These glasses have a fluid-filled lense that allows children (aged 12-18) to self-adjust their glasses as their sight changes over time. Targeted at children with limited access to opticians - and who would otherwise struggle to see blackboards in class clearly - it was designed by Professor John Silver from The Centre for Vision in the Developing World to not only improve vision, but look good too.
It's a fantastically feel-good story and one that shows what happens when the general public engages with design - note that The Shard did not win. In fact, in second place was the [tear-jerk alert] 3D printed Exoskeleton "Magic Arms" device to help children with musculoskeletal disabilities and in third was a non-stick ketchup bottle.