“If it is our serious purpose to understand the thoughts of a people the whole analysis of experience must be based upon their concepts, not ours.”
Franz Boas ( Recent anthropology. 1943. In: Science 98:311-314, 334-337)
As an information design consultant, I was always curious how contemporary design methods could be improved or enhanced. With my research of synthetic worlds and my getting-in-touch process with ethnographic methods, I realised that there is a good chance to bring new approaches to information design.
This idea is not new to the research community (in this case to the information architects and HCI-experts). But to my surprise, some essential aspects of ethnography (see e.g. Agar and Spradley) were completely ignored: the researchers own cultural background and the importance of language.