Norman Chan (Analysis)

Thanks to its gradual set of observational criteria, one inherent strength of vultology lies into its relative immediacy. The study of typological signals should thus be of great help as an additional tool in the scientific definition of psychology. Furthermore, it may allow for a more empirical, and subsequently personal approach to take place, not in contradiction with verified knowledge, but as a complement, notably where its methodological constraint is unable to be arranged. Anyone might appreciate to get some preliminary insight into the mind of a distant relative or an unknown speaker, for whom there might not even be accessible biography or interview. Television and the Internet are abounding with these humble contributors, such as Norman Chan.

Nevertheless, it would be hasty to consider that, because the operation is informal, it becomes at once easier. In contrast with other more renowned or cooperative personalities, for whom there might be a variety of material to choose from and compare, the sample relating to a passing unknown might be considerably restricted, and lacking clarity. Therefore, to get a better chance as tackling it, one should be both exacting with signals and familiar with limiting factors, to the point of being ready to suspend judgement altogether, or to set on a hypothetical, if not partial guess. Every detail, including the most intricate, will need to be acknowledged in order to consolidate a reasonable assumption.

In the case of Norman Chan, we can notice that the simple fact that his face is obfuscated by a microphone in some of the more informal videos is reducing considerably their typological value. This leaves one mostly with his reviewing presentation, which displays a high resolution image, but is then tributary to performance. Fortunately, it seems in this case like in many others that the artificial aspect of the setting is not confining the expression of the type, but mostly modulating it.


Figure 1 : Norman Chan’s face is masked by his microphone

From the get go, it is obvious that Norman Chan is willing to convey some energy through his delivery. However, a more nuanced observation might underline that his whole body appears to keep some residual rigidity, which manifest mainly through a jerky gesticulation.

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Figure 2 : Norman Chan’s hand is shaking stiffly

Where he succeeds the most, perhaps, is in deploying a rich voice tone, which nevertheless regularly wane through momentum halting, with brief but notably dispassionate pauses. In fact, if one refers to the emotional intent anticipated by the host, one can be surprised by the disproportion between his hyperbolic statement and the mindset suggested through his face.

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Figure 3 : Norman Chan’s face expression when saying that he is “super excited”

Overall, even though a pleasant communication is conscientiously maintained, the expressive range is strikingly modest, notably in term of smiles. It is as if Norman Chan was meaning to expand toward its audience, but his energy was systematically receding into his body, resulting in a series of exerted pushes. This could be most visible through his hands, as they extend hesitantly and quickly come back on his side, with very stiff upper arms and shoulders. This strongly suggests a type with reactive/introverted logical judgement, abbreviated Ti, as a leading process, and proactive/extraverted ethical judgement, abbreviated Fe, as a polar process.

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Figure 4 : Norman Chan’s receding moves

Since eyes are not the most prominent aspect of a judging-lead type mannerism, it can be a little bit more demanding to identify the secondary perception oscillation, more so when the protagonist is actively trying to track the camera, or simply turned in another direction from the viewer perspective. First, one should not confuse a common physical feature such as descending eyelid shape, with the active muscle contraction of reactive/introverted concrete perception (Si). Actually, from the fact that they do not toggle, but only drift to the side and come back to fixate the prospective audience in a steady fashion, one can gain confidence in its claim that they alternate from a far-focused, “hypnotic” stare, with lowered upper eyelid, to a more open, “intense” stare, notably in instances of excitation and explorative handling.

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Figure 5 : Norman Chan’s far-focused gaze followed by alert, open eyes

Again, the wearing of glasses is making the acquisition of a proper scowl a precarious enterprise, but with patience, one can capture what appears to be a center contraction with a “sharp” gaze. All this can be put forward as evidence of proactive/extraverted concrete perception (Se) and reactive/introverted abstract perception (Ni) pairing, which determines the overall type as TiSe/Alevin.

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Figure 6 : Norman Chan’s presumed scowl next to his resting face

The positive outcome of this demonstration should illustrate the universal appeal of vultulogy. Yet, the obstacles encountered along the way should also highlight that its practice is comparably as accessible as it is rigorous and precise. This might be especially remembered when transitioning from external observation to speculations about the corresponding mind states, which often constitute the core of one’s personal concern. This is the reason a dedicated article, with its own proper epistemology, should probably be considered, if one were to elaborate thoroughly on the particular influence of the previously mentioned cognitive processes in the technical and hand-on style of Norman Chan’s reviews. In the meantime, one is admittedly justified in referring to its personal conclusions.

Sources :
Tested: Microsoft Surface Book Review
Tested in 2015: Adam Isaak’s Favorite Things!
Tested Mailbag: Custom Hot Wheels!
The Report from Camp – Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project – 2/2/16

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