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  1. #1
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    Default Neuroscience of Personality - Dario Nardi



    This book is about the results of Dario Nardi's investigation into personality type and and how it relates to activity in the brain. He proposes that people use their brain in fundamentally different ways and that particular types tend to demonstrate stronger activity in certain areas of the brain than others. The concepts are fascinating as is the book. The following is a presentation that he gave at Google on the topic which lays out some of his ideas.



    What I really liked was that this represented some pretty fresh thinking and he does a nice job of explaining things. If cognitive functions do really exist than it would seem logical that our brains are wired in certain consistent ways. One of the more interesting things I recall him saying (and I'm not even sure it's in the book) is that certain types as they age, start to look like other types. The INTJ, that prefers Ni>Te>Fi>Se is compared to the ISFP that prefers Fi>Se>Ni>Te. Those two types share the top 4 cognitive functions and as a result, brain activity converges as they grow older. I believe the idea may be that existence of the same function pairs (such as Ni/Se) and the corresponding maturation of their usage as someone gets older, causes those two types to look more similar.

    The biggest problem I have with the book is the number of participants in the study, which if I understand it correctly, is 56 individuals. I am no expert on statistics and I guess many medical studies involve small populations like this and present conclusions based on those numbers. Even if what is in the book is true, I don't understand why he didn't involve more students. It just seems like an extremely small population from which to derive conclusions from. That is the only reason I give this 4 stars instead of 5.
    Last edited by highlander; 05-08-2016 at 12:10 PM.

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  2. #2
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    This is the only personality book I bought. It's good. End of review.

  3. #3
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    This book's proposition seems potentially revolutionary if its tentative results are true

    In my understanding of the findings, it isn't dependent on the existence of a physical difference of the brain that leads cognitive type difference, but how the patterns of brain activity reflect type. his approach is truly anthropological, based in long-term observation and study, over the more conventional formal and robotic forms of cognitive study.

    Some of his findings I admit I found beautifully illustrative: that an extroverted sensing-dominant brain shows little high-level activity except for a rapid 'tennis hop' of activity between the hemispheres, like the hopping side to side of a tennis player remaining nimble, or the minimal and efficient cognitive activity of the logic model-following extroverted thinker

    I find it worth reading for anyone interested in how type could be more than a convenient but fictive model of personality
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  4. #4
    The Typing Tabby grey_beard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iauiugu View Post
    This book's proposition seems potentially revolutionary if its tentative results are true

    In my understanding of the findings, it isn't dependent on the existence of a physical difference of the brain that leads cognitive type difference, but how the patterns of brain activity reflect type. his approach is truly anthropological, based in long-term observation and study, over the more conventional formal and robotic forms of cognitive study.

    Some of his findings I admit I found beautifully illustrative: that an extroverted sensing-dominant brain shows little high-level activity except for a rapid 'tennis hop' of activity between the hemispheres, like the hopping side to side of a tennis player remaining nimble, or the minimal and efficient cognitive activity of the logic model-following extroverted thinker

    I find it worth reading for anyone interested in how type could be more than a convenient but fictive model of personality
    If what I have heard about Nardi is correct, he did not do whatever happened to be necessary to comply with the Institutional Review Board stuff for research on human subjects, and therefore, could not get federal funding for his work. It *might* be -- I am not in the field, so I don't know how the game is played -- that his results are viewed as "tainted" or *officially ignored and shunned*, and so he is not getting the kudos/attention from the rest of the professional psychological community that he would otherwise receive.

    Even though I am a physicist by training, and noted the lack of rigor in his setup, I found his results fascinating and full of chewy food-for-thought nonetheless. For example, to revise and extend his tests by using various MRI scans in lieu of EEG...
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by grey_beard View Post
    If what I have heard about Nardi is correct, he did not do whatever happened to be necessary to comply with the Institutional Review Board stuff for research on human subjects, and therefore, could not get federal funding for his work.
    I'd love to know why his work was rejected; I'd imagine its because of his active participation in studies in building rapport with subjects during the hour-long series of activities he puts them through. It's not a particularly replicable method of testing subjects, as most psychological testing I know of tries hard to make sterile and objective environments that tease out discrete parts of human nature to test, as if putting a human in such conditions is somehow truer. What works for studying a particle or bacterium seems less reliable for humans, in my humble opinion.

    What would make his work tainted or shunned? It seems like Jungian type is generally viewed lowly for a variety of reasons, many of which are based in deep assumptions of what it metaphysically presupposes, or what can be said of the mind and consciousness at all.

    What makes EEG less reliable than MRI in your mind? His results suggest type wouldn't necessarily show up in brain structures, the focus of MRIs. My takeaway from his work was that certain patterns of electrical activity correlated with self-identified type descriptions -- like the 'christmas tree' disharmony of activity most prominent among extroverted intuition doms, reflecting its trans-contextual expertise. Does this necessarily require a physical causal source?

  6. #6
    The Typing Tabby grey_beard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iauiugu View Post
    I'd love to know why his work was rejected; I'd imagine its because of his active participation in studies in building rapport with subjects during the hour-long series of activities he puts them through. It's not a particularly replicable method of testing subjects, as most psychological testing I know of tries hard to make sterile and objective environments that tease out discrete parts of human nature to test, as if putting a human in such conditions is somehow truer. What works for studying a particle or bacterium seems less reliable for humans, in my humble opinion.

    What would make his work tainted or shunned? It seems like Jungian type is generally viewed lowly for a variety of reasons, many of which are based in deep assumptions of what it metaphysically presupposes, or what can be said of the mind and consciousness at all.

    What makes EEG less reliable than MRI in your mind? His results suggest type wouldn't necessarily show up in brain structures, the focus of MRIs. My takeaway from his work was that certain patterns of electrical activity correlated with self-identified type descriptions -- like the 'christmas tree' disharmony of activity most prominent among extroverted intuition doms, reflecting its trans-contextual expertise. Does this necessarily require a physical causal source?
    Sensitivity of the scan (signal to noise ratio, possibly reproducibility).
    "Love never needs time. But friendship always needs time. More and more and more time, up to long past midnight." -- The Crime of Captain Gahagan

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  7. #7
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    The neuroscience of mbti is as valid as the neuroscience of astrology.

    What it does show is the gullibility and self interest of the followers, as well as a deep rooted resentiment and a deep desire to reify fully alive persons.

    The neuroscience of mbti is a desire to do evil dressed up as science.

    And as we note, except for the Islamic State, evil tries to hide itself, and here it hides itself behind science.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by iauiugu View Post
    I'd love to know why his work was rejected
    His leisure suit.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mole View Post
    What it does show is the gullibility and self interest of the followers, as well as a deep rooted resentiment and a deep desire to reify fully alive persons.

    The neuroscience of mbti is a desire to do evil dressed up as science.

    And as we note, except for the Islamic State, evil tries to hide itself, and here it hides itself behind science.
    Is mbti just a system for reifying people into boxes? I know of no serious users of the system who views it in such a simplistic way.

    Dario's neuroscience work reflects the more broadly assumed diversity within a single type; his latest breakdown suggests that those who self-identify as the same type are slightly more likely to have very different brain activity than it be very similar, nevermind the diversity of behaviors and particular life experiences that go behind those scanned differences

    Is it so impossible that within the great diversity of humanity that a discrete set or sets of psychosocial patterns may be valid and not 'a desire to do evil'? We are after all still animals, and mostly determined by our infrastructure and environment. Much of nature and reality can be described with categories and sets, so why not human nature? It's not like mbti even suggests there are good, bad or best types. It stresses how all types are necessarily and important and good. If anything it implicitly does much to articulate otherwise more hollow platitudes about every human's potential and value.

    Do you believe any meaningful categories can be spoken of for characterizing or understanding others?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by iauiugu View Post
    Is mbti just a system for reifying people into boxes? I know of no serious users of the system who views it in such a simplistic way.

    Dario's neuroscience work reflects the more broadly assumed diversity within a single type; his latest breakdown suggests that those who self-identify as the same type are slightly more likely to have very different brain activity than it be very similar, nevermind the diversity of behaviors and particular life experiences that go behind those scanned differences

    Is it so impossible that within the great diversity of humanity that a discrete set or sets of psychosocial patterns may be valid and not 'a desire to do evil'? We are after all still animals, and mostly determined by our infrastructure and environment. Much of nature and reality can be described with categories and sets, so why not human nature? It's not like mbti even suggests there are good, bad or best types. It stresses how all types are necessarily and important and good. If anything it implicitly does much to articulate otherwise more hollow platitudes about every human's potential and value.

    Do you believe any meaningful categories can be spoken of for characterizing or understanding others?
    Yes of course, and these categories are properly measured by a qualified psychometrician. Mbti is not psychometrics. It is a cult based upon Carl Jung who was psychotic, failed his analysis with Sigmund Freud, adopted the Fuhrer as his father figure, abused his female patients, and became a guru of the New Age religion.

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