Giant rant may (correction: will) follow. You have been warned.
I would love to fully immerse myself in the theory of Socionics, but it seems as though I have thus far not been able to. I do not think this is due to one singular reason, but I will attempt to explore some of reasons here:
1. Theoretical basis/no empirical foundations. This seems to be the overarching reason, from which the other problems manifest. Even from the very beginnings of my study of this theory, this problem became more or less immediately evident to me. On the surface of Socionics, that is, IM Elements and the Model A, this was not so big an issue. The fact, Socionics at least seems to work, so the exact truth of its claims are not so important. However, as I delved ever deeper into the theory, and the implications of the lower levels on the higher levels became apparent, I was then fully aware of the problems inherent in this system merely because it has no empirical basis, aside from the fact that it has no empirical basis to begin with, and that is
2. Wide variance/interpretation of any numbers of assertions Socionics must assume to exist in order to operate as it was designed. This should be obvious in the rather large numbers of interpretations in the most basic of Socionics theory, even despite the fact that Augusta clearly (evidently, anyway, as I have never read her works) outlined at least the basics of Socionics in her books. But the problems of interpretation become even more clear if the focal point is moved from the basic or holistic view of Socionics to its semantics (and believe me, this whole second point definitely ties in with the first, that is, the fact that there is so many different interpretations of the theory is directly caused by the fact that the theory essentially has no empirical basis).
3. Lack of reliable/centralized/any sources. Other than wikisocion, socionics.us, and a handful of Russian sources (which I have honestly not bothered to look at, because Google-translated Russian sucks), it seems to me that, by and large, Socionics as a personality typology and theory of interpersonal relations is unknown in most of civilized society. Not to say, of course, that all pseudo-science is on the same level (it is clear to me, for one, that Socionics does what it supposed to do better than any other typology I have ever encountered), but it does not change the fact that they are both pseudo-science. (wow, I derailed back to point 1?) Truthfully, the lack of sources is my biggest problem, because whether or not the theory is accurate or reliable (I could easily switch to another theory which is better if that is necessary, so the overall validity of it, in the context of reality, is not entirely important to me), I am compelled to learn more about it. Past Model A and the TIM and intertype relations, there are virtually no sources on the development of the theory, or at least any that are good (hell, even some of the sources on the basics of the theory are terrible).
Well, now that I'm done with that rant, I can get onto the real content of this thread. Firstly, a list of questions I would like answered, not to say that all of them even have a concrete answer, or that I expect them to all be answered by others. I expect to have the answers to all of them sooner or later, but the exact method in which they are answered does not matter much to me. The list is merely for my reference.
1. What exactly is Information Metabolism? What does it describe?
1a. What do the Information Elements do? What is the difference between Elements and Aspects? And how do these both synthesize to create Information Metabolism?
2. "Rings of Supervision." What do they mean and what are the implications of them?
3. DCNH descriptions. I have never seen any "real" ones.
That's it off the top of my head. I will add more if I think of them. After all, this list is mostly for personal reference anyway, so that hopefully I can study with a clear goal in sight.
I will admit that I do not even fully understand the Model A and the classical perspective on Socionics, so terribly sorry about that. I am still learning about the subject.
Alright, done with Model A stuff. Now we get into the stuff outlined in the thread title. Firstly, Model B, or potentially any non-Model A perspective of Socionics. As I alluded to in point 3 of my list of grievances with Socionics, there appears to be even less sources for Model B than Model A, and then those sources contain even less information. This disheartens me greatly... I made a thread concerning Model B some time ago and got the reply "Talk to hitta about it." My only problem is, I don't have any direct questions about it, because I don't know anything about it, other than the fact that it apparently uses 16 functions rather than 8. So going to a person about it would be useless, unless that person were fully willing to share general knowledge of the subject and then extrapolate on it until I was content. However, I have found this is almost always not the case. I prefer external, impersonal sources to people anyway, for some reason. But the point is, I would love some good information on this topic, but cannot find any.
Next are tcaud's EM types. Truthfully, the theories of tcaud and labcoat interest me the most, not because the theories actually help significantly develop Socionics (I could not know whether they do, because as I said, there are no centralized sources), but because I have seen both of them swear by their own theories. But the problem, as I said before, lies in the fact that there is no information concerning them. I have seen many people say that Model B makes Model A obsolete. But I have also seen labcoat says that his theories of focal/diffuse and narrator/taciturn cycles make Model B obsolete. tcaud proposes his theory of EM type as some form of construct alongside IM type, and entirely separate from any subtype system. But I have never seen any information about any of them at all. The times I have seen them referenced at this forum, there is no explanation as to what they are, or what they accomplish. I do not outright deny any new theories without a thorough evaluation first, but the more theories that are piled on to Socionics, the more the theory loses coherence and gains uncertainty. Differences among types can be delineated into oblivion.
Only one thing is clear to me: it has become absolutely necessary that Socionics be objectified. The subjective nature of a theory which attempts to describe objective characteristics cannot support itself.
Sorry for any grammar mistakes. It is not high on my priorities list when I am trying to externalize what just comes to me, lest I lose it.