# Thread: Ni v. Si - A Comparative Analysis

1. Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry
Everyone's opinion is valuable, imo.
That's just the Fe speaking...

2. Originally Posted by Zarathustra
That's just the Fe speaking...

:steam:

<Hey, can't you see the inTj?<

3. Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry
:steam:

<Hey, can't you see the inTj?<
Ha!

Nice try...

4. Is that ALL Ni does? Hell no. There's always information loss when trying to be succinct.

By eliminating possibilities, I mean "pattern-matching." If I'm focusing on solving a problem, there are initially several possible solutions.

Lets say you have a needle in a haystack. Gonna take forever, right? Ni pattern-matching finds the pattern that points out the needle. By "eliminating" I mean "tries then discards a pattern." The "search by hand" pattern fails. The "search by eyesight" pattern fails. But the "pull out the powerful electromagnet" pattern succeeds. Part of the game of focusing inward as Kra aptly describes is that one uses a library of patterns, trying to look up a specific pattern that is "correct" ... or more aptly, "useful."

Once we have that pattern, we tend to stick with it, though we might refine it a bit.

Ne, on the other hand, writes the library of patterns, on the fly. It's not interested in looking up a pattern: the assumption is that one doesn't know the pattern yet. One cannot settle upon a single pattern. Ne is hypotheses waiting to be explored. After exploring a pattern, one with preference for Ne will consider that subject finished and look for yet even new patterns.

Ni however, stores the pattern in its library, mostly subconsciously. One who uses Ni relies more on the stored patterns, and when focused will often ignore new patterns. One with Ne tends to ignore the stored patterns (they're there, but boring), and focus on discovering the new patterns.

Now ...

I notice how both Z and AGA think that my Ne description from my prior post feels like "Ni" to them.

Think about that for a moment.

OK, think a bit more.

One possibility is that I'm totally, completely wrong, and don't know a damn thing about N, Ne or Ni, and I'm mislabeling everything. I don't think this is the case, but it's possible.

Or, Z and AGA just made my point for me ... it's all just "N". It "feels like" N. Not "Ne" or "Ni". The preference and focus is different, but the "feeling" is very similar, and shared, between Ne and Ni. Ni, when it starts out, seems to generate a lot of patterns, hence the Ne-feeling of it. However, all those patterns are from the Ni-pattern-memory. Then it pares down and focuses on reality (as judged by Te or Fe), and that gives a focus on which patterns are useful and apply in context.

Ne starts out from an initial point and goes outward, generating new patterns that are considered and judged by Ti/Fi, exploring new truths that Ti and Fi possibly imply. The Ne in combo with Ti or Fi does eventually reach conclusions, but it is much slower, and is always searching to expand understanding, rather than drill down and make a single positive statement about a specific case.

One possible succinct simplification of this might be, Ni solves problems, Ne looks for problems to solve.

Another succinct simplification (with inherent information loss): N is "understanding the pattern language". Ne vs Ni is how you tend to use it. F is "understanding the feeling language", Fe vs Fi is how you tend to use it, and so on.

My "pet theory" is that for T and F, the e and i attitudes seem more "ingrained," that it's tough to switch from Fe to Fi or Ti to Te, and so on, but that our intuition/sensing doesn't seem to have the same "ingrained" feature. That an INTJ using Fi invokes Ne, and has kind of an "inner INFP" that is rather moody and often immature, but hidden ... it's definitely not an inner ESFP. That an ENFP using Te will be more likely to evoke Ni (all of this is assuming S vs N aren't about even in preference), and become more ENTJ? maybe? that isn't as mature as a real ENTJ. That the ENFP won't have an ESTJ vibe.

If it seems like I'm changing my theory on the fly, I'm really not ... I'm just collapsing the bigger idea into a limited amount of words. I choose different words each time in the hopes that the intuitive pattern I see becomes clear, as a show a but a single facet at a time, while the image in my head is an entire gem. I'll be satisfied if at the end of this process, my understanding is even better than it is now, even if I have to recut a few facets of the gem.

5. Originally Posted by Zarathustra
Ha!

Nice try...

that obvious?

*skips off to intj forum so i can be rude and get complimented for it*

6. Originally Posted by uumlau
Now ...

I notice how both Z and AGA think that my Ne description from my prior post feels like "Ni" to them.

Think about that for a moment.

OK, think a bit more.

One possibility is that I'm totally, completely wrong, and don't know a damn thing about N, Ne or Ni, and I'm mislabeling everything. I don't think this is the case, but it's possible.

Or, Z and AGA just made my point for me ... it's all just "N". It "feels like" N. Not "Ne" or "Ni". The preference and focus is different, but the "feeling" is very similar, and shared, between Ne and Ni. Ni, when it starts out, seems to generate a lot of patterns, hence the Ne-feeling of it. However, all those patterns are from the Ni-pattern-memory. Then it pares down and focuses on reality (as judged by Te or Fe), and that gives a focus on which patterns are useful and apply in context.
Yeah, I thought about that. We really need an Ne dom to chime in though.

7. Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry
*skips off to intj forum so i can be rude and get complimented for it*

8. Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry
that obvious?

*skips off to intj forum so i can be rude and get complimented for it*
You're cute...

9. Originally Posted by uumlau
Is that ALL Ni does? Hell no.
Ok, good.

Originally Posted by uumlau
There's always information loss when trying to be succinct.
Very true.

Originally Posted by uumlau
By eliminating possibilities, I mean "pattern-matching." If I'm focusing on solving a problem, there are initially several possible solutions.

Lets say you have a needle in a haystack. Gonna take forever, right? Ni pattern-matching finds the pattern that points out the needle. By "eliminating" I mean "tries then discards a pattern." The "search by hand" pattern fails. The "search by eyesight" pattern fails. But the "pull out the powerful electromagnet" pattern succeeds. Part of the game of focusing inward as Kra aptly describes is that one uses a library of patterns, trying to look up a specific pattern that is "correct" ... or more aptly, "useful."

Once we have that pattern, we tend to stick with it, though we might refine it a bit.
Agreed.

I just think that the "honing down" part is actually Te (or another "anchoring" function)...

I think Ni comes up with these pattern possibilities seemingly out of nowhere (I think you are correct to say that, like the other Pi function (Si), it comes from our subconscious -- although, I believe the mystery can go a little further than that...), and then Te (or Fi, or Se, or even any of the other functions, depending on circumstance and an individual's ability and tendency to use another function in coordination with Ni) hones them down.

Originally Posted by uumlau
Ne, on the other hand, writes the library of patterns, on the fly. It's not interested in looking up a pattern: the assumption is that one doesn't know the pattern yet. One cannot settle upon a single pattern. Ne is hypotheses waiting to be explored. After exploring a pattern, one with preference for Ne will consider that subject finished and look for yet even new patterns.

Ni however, stores the pattern in its library, mostly subconsciously. One who uses Ni relies more on the stored patterns, and when focused will often ignore new patterns. One with Ne tends to ignore the stored patterns (they're there, but boring), and focus on discovering the new patterns.
Very good description.

I think you're spot on with this.

Originally Posted by uumlau
Now ...

I notice how both Z and AGA think that my Ne description from my prior post feels like "Ni" to them.

Think about that for a moment.

OK, think a bit more.

Originally Posted by uumlau
One possibility is that I'm totally, completely wrong, and don't know a damn thing about N, Ne or Ni, and I'm mislabeling everything. I don't think this is the case, but it's possible.
I don't think it's necessarily this or the other possibility you mention (below).

I do think there's a possibility that you're conflating different facets of Ni with Ne.

But I don't necessarily hold to that.

I think we may just be in the process of fleshing out exactly how you, I, and everyone else are thinking (and talking) about the subject.

Originally Posted by uumlau
Or, Z and AGA just made my point for me ... it's all just "N". It "feels like" N. Not "Ne" or "Ni". The preference and focus is different, but the "feeling" is very similar, and shared, between Ne and Ni. Ni, when it starts out, seems to generate a lot of patterns, hence the Ne-feeling of it. However, all those patterns are from the Ni-pattern-memory. Then it pares down and focuses on reality (as judged by Te or Fe), and that gives a focus on which patterns are useful and apply in context.
I also think you are accurate, here.

Originally Posted by uumlau
Ne starts out from an initial point and goes outward, generating new patterns that are considered and judged by Ti/Fi, exploring new truths that Ti and Fi possibly imply. The Ne in combo with Ti or Fi does eventually reach conclusions, but it is much slower, and is always searching to expand understanding, rather than drill down and make a single positive statement about a specific case.
Why exactly do you think Ne+Ti/Fi is slower than Ni+Te/Fe?

I have my idea, but I'm wondering what you think...

Originally Posted by uumlau
One possible succinct simplification of this might be, Ni solves problems, Ne looks for problems to solve.
An interesting notion.

I wonder how this might relate to this fact: that all Ns who possess Ni are Js, while all Ns who possess Ne are Ps.

Is there a relationship between solving problems, Ni, and Jness (at least for Ns), and looking for problems to solve, Ne, and Pness.

Quite the intriguing question...

Originally Posted by uumlau
My "pet theory" is that for T and F, the e and i attitudes seem more "ingrained," that it's tough to switch from Fe to Fi or Ti to Te, and so on, but that our intuition/sensing doesn't seem to have the same "ingrained" feature. That an INTJ using Fi invokes Ne, and has kind of an "inner INFP" that is rather moody and often immature, but hidden ... it's definitely not an inner ESFP. That an ENFP using Te will be more likely to evoke Ni (all of this is assuming S vs N aren't about even in preference), and become more ENTJ? maybe? that isn't as mature as a real ENTJ. That the ENFP won't have an ESTJ vibe.
Yeah, I've heard this pet theory in different iterations a number of times.

Why exactly do you think it's easier to "switch" the attitude for Perceiving functions?

I, personally, believe I use both Ne and Ti to a significant extent (although I'm sure Sim will take umbrage with this ).

There's always the question of whether Ni+Te is simply mascarading as Ti, and, to be honest, I'm not sure whether there exists a strong counter-argument to that hypothesis: all I know is that when I look at the cognitive processes test's descriptions, that it sounds like I use Ne and Ti to almost the same extent as Ni and Te, and that I think I might actually use Ti more than Te, which would seem odd, except for the fact that it fits perfectly into my own "pet theory" (that J/P balance causes increased utilization of one's shadow functions, and that at perfect J/P balance, the two different dominant functions [in the case of an INTx, Ni and Ti] would actually both be more highly represented in an individual's functional usage than the auxiliaries of both [Te and Ne], and that, if the same individual were to also have perfectly balanced I/E, then all four "attitudinal-functions" would actually find themselves equally represented in an individual's functional usage).

Originally Posted by uumlau
If it seems like I'm changing my theory on the fly, I'm really not ... I'm just collapsing the bigger idea into a limited amount of words. I choose different words each time in the hopes that the intuitive pattern I see becomes clear, as a show a but a single facet at a time, while the image in my head is an entire gem. I'll be satisfied if at the end of this process, my understanding is even better than it is now, even if I have to recut a few facets of the gem.
Trust me, my friend, I know EXACTLY what you mean.

Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry
Yeah, I thought about that. We really need an Ne dom to chime in though.
Tesla? Sim?

10. Originally Posted by Zarathustra
But here's a question for you, uumlau, that might have significant bearing on another thread I'm in the process of creating.

How well balanced is your J/P?

(Get back to me here, or, better yet, in a PM, cuz I'm of the growing belief that one's ability to use both attitudes of the same function is likely correlated with one's J/P balance, and, considering you believe you utilize both attitudes of N and T, you'd be a great addition to my [growing] observation set).
On the test that I think had the best questions (one I paid to take), I scored 27% J, so while I'm "definitely J", I have plenty of P tendencies, especially insofar as Fi is concerned.

The same test gave 29% introverted, 40% intuitive, and 83% thinking. Based on my own self assessment, I'd raise that intuitive score and lower the thinking and introverted scores, especially as I've learned about myself over the past year since I took the test. The scores, of course, really don't mean that much, but they're interesting to keep in mind.

Personally, I believe that while I'm very strong with Te and Ni (both are about equal in the mostly-bogus cognitive process tests I've tried), Ne, Ti and Fi score moderately strong, not weak at all. This is why I think I feel an affinity for both Ne and Ni, and regard it as "just N." I can just switch mental gears and do it.

I think a lot of it came from my scientific training. Early on, I was very P, trying to get things as correct as possible, nailing down my understanding, but as I went through graduate school and started doing real science, I became much more J. (Some people argue that one doesn't change type. I think they're mistaken. People grow and mature, and when one is on the "border" between two types, can cross over given time and training.)

I get the suspicion that early on, due to immaturity, most all INTJs look very INTP-ish, until they realize that they like having their life a wee bit more organized and put forth the effort.

Around the 8th grade or so, I was your typical nerd who always loved learning something new, but I ran into something I couldn't quite get. My really cool math teacher could explain the math better than I could, even though I understood the math thoroughly. I could "explain" the math, but most people seemed puzzled by what I said. I realized that I might not actually know it as well as I might, and from about that point on, I made a very strong effort to always be able to explain what I know. If I couldn't explain it, how could I say I really knew it? How could it even be useful, if I couldn't explain it? So that's what I did.

After that, I finally started to learn to write well. Not just correct grammar, but actually forming paragraphs that others could read and comprehend without much difficultly. I endeavored to understand the topic well enough to explain it, and that if I couldn't explain it, then I couldn't really claim to understand it.

Looking back, that's where Te finally got its training. To this day, I habitually explain things to myself, listen to the explanation, and often respond to myself saying, "that's bullshit" and proceed to find a better understanding or more clear explanation.

You guys only see about half of what I type, and 10% of what I think, when I make a post.

I generally don't like the equating of two things that indeed have differences -- it's like saying two things are the same in one way, but different in another, so we'll just call them the same -- but you used quotations around "just N", just spent time delineating the two concepts, and obviously have a respect for what you believe to be their differences, so I can't fault you much.

I do still think, though, that such language tends to confuse things a bit...
Agreed. However, look at it from the "facets of a gem" picture I used. Ne is one facet of intuition, Ni is the other. OK, I guess it's a coin. Anyway, I think some people can only see one side of the coin or the other, while others can see the whole coin, and can flip it around at will. I believe that I am in the latter category. This "sides of a coin" image is a better description of what I mean when I say "Ne and Ni are really just the same single entity, N." Another similar would be the observation that an electron and a positron are the same thing, except the positron is an electron going backwards in time. I'm not saying that the "definition of Ne" should be the same as the "definition of Ni", but rather that the definitions only reflect pieces of a greater truth w/r to N.

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