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Old 03-18-2010, 09:06 PM   #1
Indubitably
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My procrastinatory tendencies have recently fixated on the television show "Fringe", so I thought I'd share my guess as to character type and ask what conclusions you all came to.

Olivia Dunham - ISFP (driven, idealistic, adaptable, aware, damaged, batman emo-ninja)

Peter Bishop - ISTP (analytical, resourceful, pragmatic, Rambo-McGuyver love child)

Walter Bishop - INTP (curious, creative, analytical, perceptive, batshit insane)

Philip Broyles - INTJ (focused, decisive, perceptive, rational, glare that burns a hole in your skull)

Nina Sharp - ENTJ (clever, charming, ruthless, efficient, part evil-robot)

Charlie Francis - ISTJ (stoic, dependable, determined, all evil-robot)

William Bell - ENTP ? (I don't really know, I've seen all of like 10 mins of footage involving him)
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Old 03-18-2010, 09:48 PM   #2
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Walter Bishop does seem big on Ti and Ne, but he's much too excitable and spontaneous when he's in his element to be an introvert so I'm going with ENTP.

I'm not terribly good with typing sensors, but Olivia using Fi+Se with tertiary Ni makes more sense than what I've come up with so far.
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Old 03-18-2010, 10:01 PM   #3
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  Originally Posted by Scatterbrane
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Walter Bishop does seem big on Ti and Ne, but he's much too excitable and spontaneous when he's in his element to be an introvert so I'm going with ENTP.

I'm not terribly good with typing sensors, but Olivia using Fi+Se with tertiary Ni makes more sense than what I've come up with so far.

Thats what I'm thinking, Ni's influence is definitely present, but in much more of a background support type of roll, than you would find with an "iNtuitive".

As for Walter, I'd say that kind of behavior is about as typically INTP as you get. Around most humans they're touchy and critical, but let them loose in their natural environment, surrounded by a few close friends, and they're like a kid in a candy store.

ENTPs are certainly oddballs in their own right, but much more naturally affable and charming. Of course, Walter has been in a mental institution for the better part of two decades, so any judgment about his personality type would warrant further scrutiny.

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Old 08-29-2011, 05:28 PM   #4
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Just got addicted to the show, so here's my 2 cents:

Olivia Dunham - INFJ

Peter Bishop - xSTP

Walter Bishop - ENxp

Philip Broyles - INTJ and oh-so robot-like!

Nina Sharp - xNxJ

Charlie Francis - ISTJ

William Bell - no idea
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Old 08-29-2011, 05:52 PM   #5
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  Originally Posted by Indubitably
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My procrastinatory tendencies have recently fixated on the television show "Fringe", so I thought I'd share my guess as to character type and ask what conclusions you all came to.

Olivia Dunham - ISFP (driven, idealistic, adaptable, aware, damaged, batman emo-ninja)

Peter Bishop - ISTP (analytical, resourceful, pragmatic, Rambo-McGuyver love child)

Walter Bishop - INTP (curious, creative, analytical, perceptive, batshit insane)

Philip Broyles - INTJ (focused, decisive, perceptive, rational, glare that burns a hole in your skull)

Nina Sharp - ENTJ (clever, charming, ruthless, efficient, part evil-robot)

Charlie Francis - ISTJ (stoic, dependable, determined, all evil-robot)

William Bell - ENTP ? (I don't really know, I've seen all of like 10 mins of footage involving him)

I concur with most of them except I think Walter Bishop is an ENTP rather than an INTP, because his extroverted intuition is clearly dominant. If you just started watching the show, you will see how extroverted he is later on. Both Walter and Bell rely heavily on extroverted intuition to generate new possibilities and then use their Ti to justify the possibilities they generate. You will see more of William Bell later in the series.

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Old 08-29-2011, 06:52 PM   #6
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  Originally Posted by TheObserver
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I concur with most of them except I think Walter Bishop is an ENTP rather than an INTP, because his extroverted intuition is clearly dominant. If you just started watching the show, you will see how extroverted he is later on. Both Walter and Bell rely heavily on extroverted intuition to generate new possibilities and then use their Ti to justify the possibilities they generate. You will see more of William Bell later in the series.

Nice name. Which season are you talking about? I'm certain that he won't return in the 4th.

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Old 08-30-2011, 12:58 AM   #7
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  Originally Posted by NovXI
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Nice name. Which season are you talking about? I'm certain that he won't return in the 4th.

I said later on, because I assume that not everyone has seen all the episodes. If you just started watching, you might have a different impression of the characters than if you have seen all of them.

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Old 09-03-2011, 07:27 AM   #8
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  Originally Posted by TheObserver
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I said later on, because I assume that not everyone has seen all the episodes. If you just started watching, you might have a different impression of the characters than if you have seen all of them.

I'm up to date with all of it. Nimoy is retired now, unless they've filmed some footage of him before his retirement I doubt we'll see any more of him unless it's through some abstract way.

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Old 12-04-2013, 02:42 PM   #9
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I have seen all episodes and it is my favorite show of few. I would have to say that Walter is an Introvert. He may have extroverted tendencies, but over all he's displays definite introversion. He doesn't like groups of people, yet he's quite outgoing with the correct people around him. When he is in a setting with multitudes of people, he is generally lecturing which fits along the lines of introversion. However, I could be totally off my rocker and wrong, but that's just my perception.
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Old 03-24-2014, 01:36 PM   #10
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I have seen the entire series so here my opinion and yes the emphasis is the word opinion:

Olivia Dunham - ISFJ

Peter Bishop - ISTP

Walter Bishop - with or without half his brain - INTP

Walternate - INTJ

Philip Broyles - INTJ

Nina Sharp - INTJ

Charlie Francis - ISTJ

William Bell - INTJ
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Old 03-24-2014, 01:39 PM   #11
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Olivia Dunham - IS?P since she flips back and forth between the F/T dichotomy.

Peter Bishop - IN?P another flipper arounder.

Walter Bishop - ENTP

Philip Broyles - STJ

Nina Sharp - E?TJ

Charlie Francis - ISTJ

William Bell - Too little information to peg him although he's an F of some variety.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:09 PM   #12
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Walter Bishop is brain damaged though. His basic form doesn't seem to be P. He seems more ... INTJ really. He's not so much a charismatic leader, as an evil leader for dark times.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:11 PM   #13
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Hah! I had totally forgotten about this thread.

Yeah, after seeing the various iterations of Walter with and without his brain entirely intact, I think ENTP looks a like the better call. The observers really do seem to be the only truly INTP-ish characters in the show.

I'm even more convinced that Olivia is an ISFP though, you'd be surprised how close to the vest they play their cards, especially considering how preoccupied they seem to be with insuring that absolutely everything about their personal character is %100 authentically genuine.

I suppose the reasoning must be that you can't possibly be "faking it", if you express nothing at all, and if there is one thing that an ISFP absolutely cannot abide, it's people "being fake". Granted, they'll never actually let on that they can't abide people being fake, but they will secretly judge the shit out of them and make a half dozen cryptic FB posts exhaustively detailing the myriad ways in which everything about them is totally 100% the opposite of the perceived "fakeness" in question.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:14 PM   #14
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Yeah, Olivia does lean more ISFP, than ISTP. The difficulty is that they force her into the ISTP mould here and there. Artistic inconsistency license.
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Old 03-24-2014, 04:50 PM   #15
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Then people should actually watch the entire episode 8 of season 4. There was a scene in which the main Walter from the main universe was attending to a cow. He was even talking to it. He doesn't like to be "disturbed." In episode 9 of season 4, there was a final scene between him and Peter about how "lost the ones closest to him." There was also another episode in season 5 when he tells Nina to remove the part of his brain again because he is "afraid he will drive everyone around him away." He was "almost crying." I also remember somewhere in some episode about the main Walter wanting attempting to do surgery on his brain without anybody knowing and anybody around. He got lucky Olivia found him before he went through with the procedure. He was bleeding from the forehead too.

I first thought the main Olivia was an ISFP too but it became pretty clear she was less perceptive than initially thought. At least for sure, the alternate Olivia is an ISFJ.

---------- Post added 03-24-2014 at 02:03 PM ----------

  Originally Posted by Zsych
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Walter Bishop is brain damaged though. His basic form doesn't seem to be P. He seems more ... INTJ really. He's not so much a charismatic leader, as an evil leader for dark times.

"Walternate" is the nickname given by Walter Bishop to the Alternate Universe version of himself. Walter gave him the nickname while observing him through the dimensional window. However, they have several key differences in personality: Walternate never suffers from the brain damage his counterpart does, and is thus completely in control of his mental facilities. He is also more ruthless and cruel than his counterpart, with a firm belief that the ends justify the means. He is the true father of Peter Bishop.

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I see him as a P because he was the only version that is able to help Peter "return back to his timeline." In episode 9 season 4, the alternate version of Walter Walternate literally said, "I am trying to figure out what he is saying, the device is capable of more than one function, that it can return him to his timeline...but I can't help...apparently the other Walter refuses too...which is ironic..." In that same episode near the end in the last 3 minutes and 30 seconds of that episode, Peter finally understood why the main Walter which is brain damaged was the one who is likely only able to help him. Peter stated, "I'd just spent several days with the other Walter and I was very surprised to learn he is not the man I thought he was....but I am not surprised it is you..." Peter too initially thought the other Walter Walternate was more competent to help him since he isn't "damaged" but it turned out not to be the case. Also, if anybody has paid attention to the entire series, only the main Walter is able to come up with "groundbreaking discoveries" unlike Walternate. There was another episode in which it was also the main Walter that was able to save both universes...Walternate was unable to think of as many possibilities as the main one. The two Walters met each other to discuss how the process would be done and Walternate seemed clueless. The main Walter was more emotional and was talking about Peter about how "he is everything we hoped for, smart, brave, and kind" or something like that (don't remember the exact words).

---------- Post added 03-24-2014 at 02:15 PM ----------

  Originally Posted by serenesam
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I first thought the main Olivia was an ISFP too but it became pretty clear she was less perceptive than initially thought. At least for sure, the alternate Olivia is an ISFJ.

There could also be the possibility of the alternate Olivia being an ESFJ too.

---------- Post added 03-24-2014 at 02:30 PM ----------

  Originally Posted by Indubitably
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I'm even more convinced that Olivia is an ISFP though, you'd be surprised how close to the vest they play their cards, especially considering how preoccupied they seem to be with insuring that absolutely everything about their personal character is %100 authentically genuine.

I suppose the reasoning must be that you can't possibly be "faking it", if you express nothing at all, and if there is one thing that an ISFP absolutely cannot abide, it's people "being fake". Granted, they'll never actually let on that they can't abide people being fake, but they will secretly judge the shit out of them and make a half dozen cryptic FB posts exhaustively detailing the myriad ways in which everything about them is totally 100% the opposite of the perceived "fakeness" in question.

I will agree that the main Olivia is more "perceptive" than the alternate Olivia. Another reason why I can't see the P in her is based on that one episode called "Subject 13." There was that one scene between her and Peter as children and it was clear she lacked perceptive skills. Peter was far more perceptive in his ability to find little Olivia. But I will say the main Olivia's P is highly developed to the point that I will actually call her an ISFx but because MBTI requires you pick one or the other, I pick J. She's a complex character that has had a lot of experiences making her somewhat more of an expert in the fringe arena and I would agree that P types especially SP types are probably good when it comes to some of the more weird things in life. In episode 8, season 5, her P really shines through in the end in convincing Peter not to kill the one the head Observers Winmark. On the other hand, I think one can argue that one scene to be more indicative of J given the very quick decisive nature of knowing what to do which was not to kill and to get rid of that Observer. The Fringe Team is literally exhausted at this point and so Olivia is more slow to respond so this gives the illusion she is a P. Yet in the pilot episode at the beginning of season 1, it was the main Walter that offered an idea Olivia didn't think of. She seemed to be kind of confused as to what Walter was talking about with regard to "synaptic transfer state" but it didn't take her long to be very decisive to make the decision pretty quickly and Peter thought she was nuts. Also, if you watch how Olivia handles interrogations, I see a bit more of a J type.

---------- Post added 03-24-2014 at 02:34 PM ----------

Also, Olivia's personal experiences appears to be more tragic than her alternate counterpart and so this to could contribute to her being a highly developed P. But MBTI is about preferences kind of like what Fresh Face once said and so I see more of a J.

Also, in episode 23 of season 2 [about 31 minutes into it from my Itunes (since there aren't commercials)], it was the main Olivia that crossed over to the other side and told Peter that "he didn't belong there." And Peter responded by saying, "well, I don't belong there too." Then Olivia responded by saying, "yes, you do." So I don't know...that just sounds more like a J to me...P types usually reserve judgment or are less open and explicit about it, I think.

---------- Post added 03-24-2014 at 02:45 PM ----------

Also, the main Olivia seemed so decisive, quick, and enthusiastic to get Walter out of the mental hospital from the beginning in the very first episode of the first season. There was that one scene where Olivia actually made the decision for Peter to be Walter's guardian. Peter was reluctant and said, "no, I will not do it." Olivia just said "he'll do it." All of this is happening right in front of the main Walter.

---------- Post added 03-25-2014 at 10:45 AM ----------

  Originally Posted by Scatterbrane
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Walter Bishop does seem big on Ti and Ne, but he's much too excitable and spontaneous when he's in his element to be an introvert so I'm going with ENTP.

  Originally Posted by TheObserver
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I concur with most of them except I think Walter Bishop is an ENTP rather than an INTP, because his extroverted intuition is clearly dominant.

  Originally Posted by Distance
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Walter Bishop - ENTP

“Walter Bishop was born in Cambridge in 1946, and attended Harvard University, conducting postgraduate study at Oxford and MIT. His I.Q., a profoundly above-average 196, made him one of the most brilliant scientific minds of his generation.”

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Having an IQ of 196 seems quite high for an ENTP unless he is an outlier or the exception.

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Old 03-28-2014, 10:10 PM   #16
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Serenesam:

I can see that you've put a lot of thought into your typings, (and I do appreciate that, because there are a lot of people on the interwebs churning out typings of fictional characters, who don't even bother to do that much) but I'll need you to put your perspective in terms of the Jungian cognitive function theory that the MBTI is built on, before I can really engage you in fruitful discussion about this sort of thing.

That doesn't mean that there aren't some good ideas behind what you have to say, just that we can't really break down the nuts and bolts of our disagreement, until we can at least agree on just exactly what those nuts and bolts are.
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Old 03-29-2014, 12:19 PM   #17
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  Originally Posted by Indubitably
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Serenesam:

I can see that you've put a lot of thought into your typings, (and I do appreciate that, because there are a lot of people on the interwebs churning out typings of fictional characters, who don't even bother to do that much) but I'll need you to put your perspective in terms of the Jungian cognitive function theory that the MBTI is built on, before I can really engage you in fruitful discussion about this sort of thing.

That doesn't mean that there aren't some good ideas behind what you have to say, just that we can't really break down the nuts and bolts of our disagreement, until we can at least agree on just exactly what those nuts and bolts are.

That's interesting you see it that way. I wasn't looking forward to engaging you in a fruitful discussion or debate. I simply "felt" compelled to point out "details" associated to what I remember seeing after all, I do remember watching every single episode. I think it's also in my nature too because I am after all, a Sensor Type.
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And I would disagree I actually put in a lot of thought since it actually came pretty natural when I was typing it. One can't simply just look at Youtube clips or read online biographies to be able to "know everything" and type up the characters. You have to watch every single episode and consider every single detail.

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Old 03-29-2014, 06:58 PM   #18
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Serenesam:

I get how that statement might seem like an indictment of your right to an opinion, but I'm really not insinuating that you're "trying too hard", so there really is no need to defend your ideas against summary dismissal. My tone may have come off a bit high-handed and imperious, but when I assumed the mantle of majority consensus, I did so specifically because [most of] the other people here appear to be framing their ideas with the same general context that I'm using, and because [most of] the people in this thread seem to more or less agree with my reasoning. When I say that your attention to detail is a good thing, I actually mean that your attention to detail is a good thing, and when I say that I believe you have something meaningful to say that is simply obscured by a lack of context, I actually do mean that I believe you have something meaningful to say that is simply obscured by a lack of context.

For instance, I've stated that I believe Olivia was an ISFP because her aggregate behaviour was strongly indicative of an Se oriented "hands-on" approach to dominant Fi (introverted feeling) evaluation of the world she lives in, backed up by tertiary Ni (introverted intuition) gut instinct / hunches. Where as Distance essentially noted that it's more accurate to say the writers vacillate between ISFP and ISTP, with the majority of the episodes clearly portraying her as an ISFP.

Distance, occasionally talks about Olivia being more or less "T", but presumably that's because she has assumed that most everyone in the thread will interpret her use of "T" as an indication that she means "yeah, mostly Olivia is Fi dominant, but if you lump all the episodes together like that you will miss the fact that sometimes her behaviour is pretty clearly Ti dominant, because Fi-Se Ni-Fe can seem very similar to Ti-Se Ni-Fe if you're not specifically looking for the difference". Where as your references to "more a P" or "more a J" strikes an obvious sour note for those us who know that "P" and "J" don't have a meaningful correspondence to any particular cognitive function, outside indicating that what ever the person's most dominant judging function may be, it will be extroverted if they are "a J" and introverted if they are "a P".

There is nothing wrong with the fact that your typings are different from mine, or the fact that they are different from majority consensus, and there is nothing wrong with the fact that you are looking at specific examples. I'm not even saying that there is anything wrong with the fact that you are not as familiar with the MBTI background material as other people in the thread. Clearly you intended to contribute something meaningful, or you wouldn't have bothered with going to the trouble of citing examples and posting them here in the first place, and if I didn't believe that what you have to say could make a meaningful contribution to the thread, I wouldn't have bothered with responding to your posts in the first place. Your posts merely lack context, and regardless of volume or attention to detail, until you can provide that context, they are for all and intents and purposes spam. No one is saying that you need to engage me specifically in fruitful debate, but if you intend to post in a discussion thread on a forum, your posts do need to take the form of discussion rather than advertisement.
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Old 03-29-2014, 08:28 PM   #19
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  Originally Posted by serenesam
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“Walter Bishop was born in Cambridge in 1946, and attended Harvard University, conducting postgraduate study at Oxford and MIT. His I.Q., a profoundly above-average 196, made him one of the most brilliant scientific minds of his generation.”

Source:
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Having an IQ of 196 seems quite high for an ENTP unless he is an outlier or the exception.

Yes, an IQ of 196 would be an outlier - that's part of the definition.

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Old 03-30-2014, 12:16 PM   #20
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  Originally Posted by Indubitably
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Serenesam:

I get how that statement might seem like an indictment of your right to an opinion, but I'm really not insinuating that you're "trying too hard", so there really is no need to defend your ideas against summary dismissal. My tone may have come off a bit high-handed and imperious, but when I assumed the mantle of majority consensus, I did so specifically because [most of] the other people here appear to be framing their ideas with the same general context that I'm using, and because [most of] the people in this thread seem to more or less agree with my reasoning. When I say that your attention to detail is a good thing, I actually mean that your attention to detail is a good thing, and when I say that I believe you have something meaningful to say that is simply obscured by a lack of context, I actually do mean that I believe you have something meaningful to say that is simply obscured by a lack of context.

For instance, I've stated that I believe Olivia was an ISFP because her aggregate behaviour was strongly indicative of an Se oriented "hands-on" approach to dominant Fi (introverted feeling) evaluation of the world she lives in, backed up by tertiary Ni (introverted intuition) gut instinct / hunches. Where as Distance essentially noted that it's more accurate to say the writers vacillate between ISFP and ISTP, with the majority of the episodes clearly portraying her as an ISFP.

Distance, occasionally talks about Olivia being more or less "T", but presumably that's because she has assumed that most everyone in the thread will interpret her use of "T" as an indication that she means "yeah, mostly Olivia is Fi dominant, but if you lump all the episodes together like that you will miss the fact that sometimes her behaviour is pretty clearly Ti dominant, because Fi-Se Ni-Fe can seem very similar to Ti-Se Ni-Fe if you're not specifically looking for the difference". Where as your references to "more a P" or "more a J" strikes an obvious sour note for those us who know that "P" and "J" don't have a meaningful correspondence to any particular cognitive function, outside indicating that what ever the person's most dominant judging function may be, it will be extroverted if they are "a J" and introverted if they are "a P".

There is nothing wrong with the fact that your typings are different from mine, or the fact that they are different from majority consensus, and there is nothing wrong with the fact that you are looking at specific examples. I'm not even saying that there is anything wrong with the fact that you are not as familiar with the MBTI background material as other people in the thread. Clearly you intended to contribute something meaningful, or you wouldn't have bothered with going to the trouble of citing examples and posting them here in the first place, and if I didn't believe that what you have to say could make a meaningful contribution to the thread, I wouldn't have bothered with responding to your posts in the first place. Your posts merely lack context, and regardless of volume or attention to detail, until you can provide that context, they are for all and intents and purposes spam. No one is saying that you need to engage me specifically in fruitful debate, but if you intend to post in a discussion thread on a forum, your posts do need to take the form of discussion rather than advertisement.

Well, clearly, then you don't know me all that well and I don't really blame you because I haven't really had much interaction with you specifically. The people that "do" know me know I am not really a big a fan of cognitive functions and here is the link (which by the way is a link that has been posted before):


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But if you insist on talking cognitive functions, then when I say say so and so is a certain MBTI, the cognitive functions parallel with that. All of the examples I pointed out earlier would still apply so for example, I said I believe Dr. Walter Bishop is an INTP. So in essence, I really do see Bishop's dominant function as Ti. The INTP is usually labeled as the "thinker" and that is what Walter is precisely like. Walter enjoys being alone to "come about in discovering epiphanies" other characters cannot.

Olivia's Si is really showing in season 5 when she was talking to Michael and asked him if he remembered a statement that was very specific. I don't really see Olivia as having Fi in "dominant" behavior. In my opinion, Fi is "far" from her true being. I see Fe as being more relevant because she really knows how to respond to the needs of others both implicitly and explicitly. Make no mistake, Olivia is the perfect example of what a heroine is and she is not the passive kind but rather the active kind. This more closely resembles ISFJ not ISFP. Like for example, having the courage to travel to the other side despite her supervisor's hesitation back in season two clearly illustrates this. This is taking a huge risk, something that an ISFP is less willing to take. And I don't think someone who is dominant in Fi would be that way.

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Old 03-30-2014, 12:23 PM   #21
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  Originally Posted by serenesam
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“Walter Bishop was born in Cambridge in 1946, and attended Harvard University, conducting postgraduate study at Oxford and MIT. His I.Q., a profoundly above-average 196, made him one of the most brilliant scientific minds of his generation.”

Source:
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Having an IQ of 196 seems quite high for an ENTP unless he is an outlier or the exception.

Having an IQ of 196 is excessive for any type and if you're paying attention, Walter's not exactly...errr...normal.
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Old 03-30-2014, 12:28 PM   #22
serenesam
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  Originally Posted by Distance
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Having an IQ of 196 is excessive for any type and if you're paying attention, Walter's not exactly...errr...normal.
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Right. But the excessiveness is indicative of the ability to think, think, and more think. Just like with the Observers, there is a "cause" for the Observers to acquire their abilities. But I am not going to say what it is just to test if people have really watched the show (after all, everybody is a liar just generally speaking according to research).

If anybody had actually paid attention, you can say the same thing you said about Walter to the Observers, they're not exactly...errr....normal.
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...and yet we are so quick to type up the Observers as INTPs????

---------- Post added 03-30-2014 at 09:35 AM ----------

And it's fascinating Indubitably would even utilize the word "spam." Perhaps I should copy and paste the source I added in an earlier post:

Many of us are familiar with the cognitive functions (Fe, Fi, Te, Ti, Se, Si, Ne, Ni) and how they are ordered for each type, i.e. type dynamics.
But questions have been raised over whether cognitive functions and type dynamics actually exist. Researchers have pointed out the following:
There is no empirical evidence for the existence of type dynamics, which were described by Myers in 1962. Type dynamics are still purely anecdotal after all these decades. Why?
Almost no research has been done on whether or not there is such as thing as a tertiary or inferior function. Who knows if they exist, or what they might be? At this point their existence is purely speculative, and while there are three different models explaining them, none them have any proof.
Cognitive functions appear to rest mainly upon the authority of Myers' original writings, which were based on the authority of Jung's original writings. Although the writings have taken on the status of canon, this does not mean that Jung was right to begin with. In addition, what he wrote was different from what Myers came up with. Historical precedent does not constitute proof of the cognitive functions' existence any more than it can prove that the Earth is flat. The fact that everyone has always believed something does not make it correct.
The fact that the four letter code for a type is empirically solid does not imply that cognitive function theory is also empirically solid. In fact, they are two separate theories which have been packaged together. In "basic" (empirically proven) type theory, each of the four letters in the code stands separately, independent of the others' influence. In type dynamics, the letters are said to interact; this has yet to be demonstrated. Therefore the valid evidence for "basic" MBTI theory does not by association constitute valid evidence for the existence of type dynamics.
There have been--and still are--multiple theories about how the cognitive functions are actually arranged, which ones are dominant, how many dominants and auxiliaries there are, and which attitudes are preferred and nonpreferred. None of these theories have yet been proven. The best known model is simply the one that made its way into the official MBTI manual.
There is not yet any study showing that different functions emerge over the course of one's lifespan, or that the development of these functions leads to a midlife crisis. Therefore these ideas cannot constitute proof for the existence of type dynamics.
The MBTI manual found some confirmation for type dynamics in the fact that certain types with a dominant function seem to use that function more characteristically than those who have the same function as an auxiliary. However, the study also found that some types with an auxiliary function used that function in a more characteristic way than those with said function as a dominant. In short, the evidence actually contradicts itself.
One study asked non-type-saavy observers to describe types that had, for example, Thinking as their dominant function, by choosing adjectives from a pool of 300 words. Researchers compared the top 10 and lowest 10 adjectives chosen to describe all types who shared Thinking as their dominant. The results? There was little overlap between the sets of adjectives, meaning that little similarity was noticed. The researchers also compared adjectives for types who shared one of the following: Auxiliary Thinking, dominant Feeling, auxiliary Feeling, dominant Intuition, and auxiliary Intuition. The same results held true for these functions--little to no overlap between the descriptive adjectives chosen. From these results we can either conclude that a.) too many adjectives were used, offering too much variety and too little chance for any overlap to appear, or b.) Nobody sees type dynamics except those who already expect to see them. The latter may indicate a simple case of observer bias on the part of psychologists. And remember, it's all anecdotal at this point, and anecdotes frequently walk hand in hand with observer bias.
Effects which are often attributed to type dynamics can just as easily be attributed to other things, i.e. a person who is quiet, logical, and thoughtful can be described equally well as a dominant introverted Thinker with auxiliary extraverted Intuition or as an Introvert and an Intuitive and a Thinker (an INT). There is no reason why one explanation is intrinsically superior.
Evidence shows that there is little to no factual basis for the hierarchical order of the functions, i.e. there is no proof that dominant > auxiliary > tertiary > inferior. For example, no one has yet shown that Ti > Ne > Si > Fe for type INTP. In fact, the evidence fits a random arrangement of functions better, i.e. dominant > auxiliary turns up pretty much just as often as auxiliary > dominant. In fact, one study did not turn up a single instance where the pattern dominant > auxiliary > tertiary > inferior occurred, as would be predicted for type dynamics. Rather, random chance appears to determine the order in which functions actually appear.
Nor is there yet any proof that functions are extraverted or introverted. A study examined whether dominant functions that are extraverted (i.e. dominant extraverted feeling) turned up more clearly than dominant functions that are introverted (i.e. dominant introverted feeling). If type dynamics theory is true, then those who extravert their feeling function should show it more clearly and obviously than those who introvert it. But no differences were noted by observers; in fact, traits of both extraverted and introverted dominant functions were seen as being just as clear and obvious by observers. By contrast, when "plain vanilla" type theory was used, it could be seen that an ENTJ (for example) displayed intuition and thinking in a clear, obvious way, whereas an INFP (for example) displayed intuition and feeling in a less clear and obvious way. The difference, then, is due to plain, simple Introversion and Extraversion, and not to the type dynamics explanation that certain parts of oneself are either introverted or extraverted.
Back in the days of Galileo and Copernicus, the official canon was that planets traveled in perfect, harmonious circles. But then proof began to appear that planets actually revolved in messy, imperfect ellipses. Horrors! There must be some mistake.
The "official" scientists squirmed, trying to shoehorn the observations into established paradigms of circular motion. They invented "cycles" and "epicycles" where planets revolved in small circles within their normal, larger circles. Complicated systems of cycles and epicycles were invented--all to no avail. The evidence simply did not match circular motion, no matter how hard they tried to justify it. Finally Occam's razor and the K.I.S.S. principle prevailed.
Once people grudgingly accepted the evidence, they discovered that elliptical motion really wasn't as bad as it had seemed all those years ago. In fact, it was kind of cool in its own right.
Type dynamics evokes this historical scenario all too well. Here we have a theory which still has not been proven in spite of efforts, which never had any proof in the first place, and which does not fit existing observations in any of its multiple variations.
But type dynamics is still very useful--it conveniently explains away any contradictions to type theory that may pop up.
Type dynamics allows introverts to behave like extraverts and thinkers to behave like feelers. And so there is always a ready-made excuse to justify any inconvenient deviations from the code that might turn up. Circular motion theory doesn't fit elliptical observations? Just throw in an epicycle or two; all better. The more ambiguous and complicated your theory is, the easier is it to justify contradictions that might otherwise discredit it.
But that leaves us with a little dilemma, doesn't it? If we get rid of type dynamics, then how do we explain observations that don't fit the basic MBTI theory? I.e., what if you have a person who says, "I think I'm a Judger because I like having a clear plan, but my desk is always messy"?
Happily for us, an alternate explanation to type dynamics exists that is simple, does not require unproven theoretical constructs, and fits the existing data well. Let's examine this alternative.
A Better Alternative to Cognitive Functions and Type Dynamics
The replacement scheme proposed by Reynierse drops type dynamics entirely. Instead, a person’s letters (for example, INTP) are ranked in order of “strength.” And what is meant by strength, exactly?
Well, when you took the Myers-Briggs test (or any of the other MBTI knockoffs floating around) you probably noticed that some of your personality traits--i.e., Thinking, Feeling or whatever--were very clear and obvious, i.e. you answered 9/10 questions as a Thinker rather than a Feeler. For other personality traits, perhaps Sensing vs. Intuition, you might have noticed that you were pretty middle-of-the-road in that you didn’t have much preference for either way of functioning. For example, perhaps you only answered 6/10 questions as an Intuitive.
In the traditional way of looking at type theory, it doesn’t matter whether your preference for any particular letter is clear or slight--a letter is a letter is a letter. If you answer 10/10 questions about Introversion vs. Extraversion as an Introvert, then it is considered the same thing as if you had answered only 6/10 questions as an Introvert. In short, the strength of each preference was ignored. As one MBTI practitioner put it, "You're either pregnant or you're not." However, it turns out that this information has predictive value and can actually be useful in understanding one’s own unique personality.
If we put each of the traits on a spectrum, i.e. E – I, S – N, T – F, and J – P, allowing for shades of grey rather than just black/white, yes/no choices, we can get a much clearer picture of an individual's unique personality. “Types” become simplified representations of the spectrum, the way a rainbow is divided up into six colors rather than a million different shades. The goal is to find a scheme that adequately represents this added complexity without becoming too overdetailed to be useful.
Example: An NTIP
For example. Let us suppose that a person tests with the following:
10/10 preference for Intuition
8/10 preference for Thinking
8/10 preference for Introversion
6/10 preference for Perceiving
These preferences indicate an INTP, but more than that, they indicate an NTIP. This “NTIP” has Intuition as their strongest preference and will be most skilled at making connections and seeing patterns and relationships. Compared to the other INTP variants (INPT, TPNI, etc), this person has only a slight preference for Perceiving, and thus they may be almost as comfortable using Judging as Perceiving.
Example: A TNPI
Suppose that a person tests with the following:
10/10 preference for Thinking
9/10 preference for Intuition
8/10 preference for Perceiving
6/10 preference for Introversion
Using our ranking system, we would identify this person as a TNPI. As a strong Thinker, the TNPI would be most skilled at logic, reasoning, and task-oriented analysis. Intuition, which was almost as favored, will also be strongly preferred, at the expense of skills in Sensing. The least favored preference, i.e. Introversion, indicates that the TNPI will demonstrate Introversion only slightly more than Extraversion. Thus, they would be better than the average INTP at interfacing with the outer world, but they would also sacrifice something of the inner world of Introverts. Incidentally, people who have neither a strong preference for Introversion or Extraversion are called Ambiverts.
Note: Being a middle-of-the-roader has its own particular “amphibian” benefits, in that the person is able to straddle the boundary between land and water and enjoy the benefits of both sides. People with slight preferences are favored to succeed in situations where frequent flipflop between preferences is necessary, or when success hinges on a balance of skills. However, just as a frog cannot swim as well as a fish nor run as well as a dog, so a middle-of-the-roader is not as favored for success in situations where one preference is consistently or strongly required (in this case those with clear preferences are favored). So, having a slight or clear preference is neither good nor bad; it merely indicates which unique ecologic niche you operate best in. And since there are all kinds of niches in this world, all kinds of preference strengths are necessary to keep things running.
Non-Preferred Functions
Since we acknowledge that the strength of one’s preferences is important, and that a person with a slight preference may exhibit nearly as much of one preference as the other preference, it is good practice to note the non-preferences at the end of the basic letter code. So for example, an NTIP is really an NTIPjefs--meaning that they will use Sensing the least of all possible preferences and Intuition the most of all. By a similar token, a TNPI is actually a TNPIejsf--meaning that this person will use Feeling the least of all their possible preferences and Thinking the most. Note that the lower-case non-preferences will always be an exact mirror of the upper-case letters of the preferences. The last four letters aren’t a “shadow” or “inferior”--they are preferences in their own right, albeit less used ones. Indeed, for a person who has several borderline 6/10 functions, the lowercase trailing letters may be almost as important as the upper case letters. Thus it is proper to include them.
Strong Preference(s)
There is no reason why a person cannot have more than one strong prefence. Suppose that an INTP has both very clear I and very clear P, and both preferences are 10/10 when measured on a test? In this case, we can designate this INTP as (say) an IPTNsfje, underlining the top preferences to show that they are clearest.
It is possible to have one, two, three or even four strong preferences. It is also possible to have no preferences at all.
Conclusion
The theory above explains individual variation without the need to resort to unproven hypothetic constructs, namely type dynamics and cognitive functions. Furthermore, it is empirically sound and can be measured on a test. It also matches up with existing field observations. As a simpler and more elegant solution, it deserves consideration within the internet type community as an alternative to an increasingly shaky theory.
Citations
Reynierse, J. H. (2009). The case against type dynamics. Journal of Psychological Type, 69, 1-21.
Reynierse, J. H. (2012). Towards an empirically sound and radically revised type theory. Journal of Psychological Type, 72, 1-25.
Reynierse, J. H., & Harker, J. B. (2008a). Preference multidimensionality and the fallacy of type dynamics: Part 1 (Studies 1 - 3). Journal of Psychological Type, 68, 90-112.
Reynierse, J. H., & Harker, J. B. (2008b). Preference multidimensionality and the fallacy of type dynamics: Part 2 (Studies 4 - 6). Journal of Psychological Type, 68, 113-138.

---------- Post added 03-30-2014 at 09:38 AM ----------

Gotta love this part from the source I posted:

Incidentally, people who have neither a strong preference for Introversion or Extraversion are called Ambiverts.

Note: Being a middle-of-the-roader has its own particular “amphibian” benefits, in that the person is able to straddle the boundary between land and water and enjoy the benefits of both sides.

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Old 03-30-2014, 12:51 PM   #23
Distance
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  Originally Posted by serenesam
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Right. But the excessiveness is indicative of the ability to think, think, and more think. Just like with the Observers, there is a "cause" for the Observers to acquire their abilities. But I am not going to say what it is just to test if people have really watched the show (after all, everybody is a liar just generally speaking according to research).

If anybody had actually paid attention, you can say the same thing you said about Walter to the Observers, they're not exactly...errr....normal.
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...and yet we are so quick to type up the Observers as INTPs????

As if IQ is indicative of type. Can you link all the studies that bracket types by IQ? The only one I can think of, was a small study done in a single third rate university where they studied the small percentile of gifted. Now if studies were done across the nation, with all the top tier universities and not only the gifted, I'd put more stock into it.

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Old 03-30-2014, 12:57 PM   #24
serenesam
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  Originally Posted by Distance
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As if IQ is indicative of type. Can you link all the studies that bracket types by IQ? The only one I can think of, was a small study done in a single third rate university where they studied the small percentile of gifted. Now if studies were done across the nation, with all the top tier universities and not only the gifted, I'd put more stock into it.

Nice way of dodging the question.
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There was that one scene about the transformation to becoming an Observer via a chip.

I remember Walter saying "the cerebral cortex is becoming so thick that it is making room for more logical thought." There was another scene in which Walter told Peter, "it is in the process of reshaping your brain. Peter said, "shrinking the nucleus accumbens in my limbic system, supressing emotional memories in favor of higher rational thought. Also expanding my cerebral cortex.

The point is not so much of IQ in fact it has nothing to do with IQ but rather a complete change in personality. This, if one wants to talk in cognitive functions, correlates with high Ti as the sole primary dominant function. They have no emotions. All they are doing is continually thinking minute after minute. This would happen regardless as to whether one's IQ is high or low as programming behavior is truly "programmed."

The entire season 5 did an excellent job of illustrating this, akin to a new world order sort of like Hitler's vision of a "perfect race."

....and you have to wonder why there is no such thing as a female Observer....

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Old 03-30-2014, 01:05 PM   #25
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  Originally Posted by serenesam
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Nice way of dodging the question.
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There was that one scene about the transformation to becoming an Observer via a chip.

I remember Walter saying "the cerebral cortex is becoming so thick that it is making room for more logical thought." There was another scene in which Walter told Peter, "it is in the process of reshaping your brain. Peter said, "shrinking the nucleus accumbens in my limbic system, supressing emotional memories in favor of higher rational thought. Also expanding my cerebral cortex.

The point is not so much of IQ in fact it has nothing to do with IQ but rather a complete change in personality. This, if one wants to talk in cognitive functions, correlates with high Ti as the sole primary dominant function. They have no emotions. All they are doing is continually thinking minute after minute. This would happen regardless as to whether one's IQ is high or low as programming behavior is truly "programmed."

The entire season 5 did an excellent job of illustrating this, akin to a new world order sort of like Hitler's vision of a "perfect race."

....and you have to wonder why there is no such thing as a female Observer....

Could have sworn your point surrounded Walter Bishop which I've responded to, where you haven't provided a link to the studies that you're relying on, that bracket type by IQ.

Bishop shows all the signs of Ne gone wild as the dominant function where Ti does corral, here and there. He also strongly displays Fe as his tert function.

The Observers are a separate issue where they Ti it up like no one else. They're unhealthy INTPs, locked in Ti-Si loops.

It's been awhile since I've watched Fringe so petty details elude. My judgment is based on my subjective perception of overarching patterns.

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