The goal of the Linux-Society (LS, dating back to the mid-90s as a professional club and tech-mentoring group) has been a purely-democratic Information Society; many of the articles are sociological in nature. The LS was merged with Perl/Unix of NY to form multi-layered group that included advocacy, project-oriented learning by talented high school students: textbook constructivism. Linux has severe limitations such that it is useless for any computer that will, say, print or scan. It is primarily used for webservers and embedded devices such as the Android. (Google is high-invested in it).

Technology is problematic. During the heyday of technology (1990s), it seemed it had the democratic direction Lewis Mumford said it should have in his seminal
Technics and Civilization.

Today, we are effectively stuck with Windows as Linux is poor on the desktop and has cultured a maladaptive following. Apple is prohibitive, and all other operating systems lack drivers, including Google's Android, an offshoot of linux.

In the late 90s there was hope for new kernels such as LibOS and ExoOS that would bare their hardware to programs, some of which would be virtual machines such as Java uses. Another important player was the L4 system that is a minor relation to the code underlying the Apple's systems. It was highly scientific but fell into the wrong hangs, apparently, and has suffered from having no progress on the desktop. There is a version, "SE" that is apparently running in many cell phones as specialized telecom chips, but is proprietary. SE's closed nature was only recently revealed, which is important because it is apparently built from publicly-owned code as it is not a "clean room" design it may violate public domain protections, and most certainly violates the widely-accepted social contract.

Recent attempts to enjoin into L4 development as an advocate for "the people" have been as frustrating (and demeaning) as previous attempts with the usual attacks to self-esteem by maladaptive "hacks" being reinforced by "leadership" (now mostly university professors).

In short, this leaves us with Windows, which is quite a reversal if you have read earlier posts here. But, upon Windows, we have free and open software development systems in the forms of GTK+ (the windows usually used on Linux) and the Minimal GNU Windows (MinGW and MSYS) systems. It is very likely this direction that development should go (that is, on Windows) such that s/w can then be ported to a currently-valid microkernel system that includes a driver system that can be adapted by hardware developers to reuse of their windows and apple drivers.

From a brief survey of L4, it appears that the last clean copy was the DROPS system of the early 2010s, was a German effort that used the Unix-like "OS kit" from an American University.

If we are going to be stuck on Windows, then it seems that a high level approach to free and open systems integration, such as creating fully transparent mouse communication between apps so that they can seamlessly work together as a single desktop (rather than deliberately conflicting). This would be very helpful for GIMP and Inkscape, both leading graphics programs that are strong in the special ways, but suffer from an inability to easily interrelate.

Another important issue is the nature, if you can call it that, of the "geek" or "hack." Technology is formed democratically but "harvested" authoritarian-ly --if I can coin a term that Mumford might use. Authority is plutarchy: a combination of aristocracy and oligarchy that is kept alive after all these millennia by using, or maligning, the information society as a part of the civilizing (or law-giving) process that embraces the dialectic as its method. Democratic restoration, that is to put humanity back on an evolutionary (and not de-evolutionary) track, I think, will require the exclusion of the "geek" from decision-making. As is, the free/open s/w culture attempts to give leadership to those who write the most lines of code --irrespective of their comprehension of the real world or relationship with normal users. We need normal people to somehow organize around common sense (rather than oligarchic rationalism) to bring to life useful and cohesive software and communications systems.

Interestingly, the most popular page on this site is about Carl Rogers' humanistic psychology, and has nothing to do with technology.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Was CG Jung a racist?

I felt encouraged to absorb more of Jung's ideas when I found a possible relationship between his archetypes and the evolution of language and the "deeper" meanings of words.

I found much about mythology in his writing (in fact I found it overwhelming), but attempted to stay on-topic with respect to his typology.  Nonetheless, I found his bipole approach (which was not his alone) to be so dimensional as to be "cosmic."

I found two of his three measures to be simple enough; it was the "sensing/intuitive" measure that took more effort to grasp.  He shows in different places how this axis can be either intro- or extraverted.   I found a racist component of his thinking that I feel would be different if he lived today, and would alter his "cosmos."

Jung makes statements in Psychological Types (1976) linking both intuition and extraversion to the "primitive" person in a negative way that was influenced by his time and culture.  They would have opposite meaning if he lived to day, as the third quote seems highly-racist as it compares natives to monkeys, and presumably would be different:

  • "unconscious demands of the extravert have an essentially primitive, infantile, egocentric character" (p. 571),
  • "intuition is characteristic of the infantile and primitive psychology" (p. 454), and
  • "a bush-man had a little boy whom he loved with the tender monkey-love of primitives" (p. 227).

In congruence with his time, he viewed natives seemingly as a lower species.  If this perception were to be altered throughout his writing, as it would probably be if he lived today, then the sensing ability of the "primitive" would become revised as the intuitive knowledge of the shaman.

I think this would alter the sensing/intuition bipole, and possibly the typology's use in instruments today.  As is, I believe that he was very much "on the fence" with respect to this and other related concepts such as empathy, abstraction, and conceptualization.  Perhaps he was forming a better view of these concepts unconsciously while he was expressing views of his time that included some racism.  I just don't see him as a racist, as racists, in my experience, tend be wholly ignorant and, in at least one case, decidedly bipolar (which mean in the other sense).

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