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what are the most important technologies that a website designer and developer must learn?

A deep understanding and appreciation of the basics of web development is the best tool you can keep with you. Go back to basics, learn what each element, property and value is intended to do, not necessarily how they may be used now. Know when to use a span VS a paragraph tag. Know when to use an ID VS a class. Know how to float properly, without relying heavily on clearfixes, and the list goes on and on.

Once you really have the core principles down, the rest is simple. You’ll know which development “fads” are worth investing time into, which aren’t, and you’ll be able to learn what’s needed for said “fads” a lot easier.