As a consultant, in the past I often pursued certifications to demonstrate my capabilities with related technologies. This led to me obtaining IBM, Java, XML, and now .NET developer certifications. In addition to demonstrating some knowledge (I emphasize some), it also gave me a reason to dive in and become acclimated with the various aspects of a technology/platform. Now, I may not remember every aspect/detail but I’ll be aware of its existence.
It may be my current situation, but I don’t hear much about certification these days. Do companies emphasize it? Do developers pursue them or set certification as a goal?