Who is the bearer of the burden?

I guess in that scenario, the chariots AI would be the “bearer of the burden”. But this seems to be a different meaning to the original chariot simile, which is something to do with the whole being more than the sum of the parts.

Yes. I was extending the cart metaphor to a five skandhas metaphor. It would still lack consciousness, though. I think. The mental consciousness? Not sure. Something would be lacking. Software is really just a decision-making mechanism, not a consciousness.

In Buddhist cultures vinnana isn’t considered something that special. Consciousness in the Buddhist sense, is one cog in the process of cognition.

Yes. It does involve knowing and understanding, doesn’t it? Software doesn’t know what it’s doing. It’s like samskara more than it is vijnana. It’s like mental action without awareness. AI is getting better, but I don’t think we’ve created anything that knows or understands.

If an AI can detect a ‘face’ in a picture, can we say it’s doing anything different from what we do?

Perception/recognition is just the first stage. It’s what the AI decides to do with that information which is interesting.

It doesn’t know what a face is or why it’s being detected. In fact, it has no idea whether it’s actually detecting faces or rocks or plants. A human watches the output and corrects it when it’s wrong. We’ve automated that with learning software that can be given thousands and thousands of images of faces and then average them all out. If we gave it random images, it wouldn’t know that it learned it incorrectly, though. It’s not aware of what it’s doing.

Your cells don’t know why they do what they are doing.

If you add another layer of sophistication in the software it could do just that. Your issue is you think human processes are ‘special’. It’s better to say that chess for example is played better by software.

Babies imprint the voices and faces of their parents. Their parents painstakingly identify and teach children what the objects around them are.

Actually, I’m just thinking through what software would represent in the five aggregates. Actual software, not science fiction software that’s self-aware. Animals have most of the higher functions that humans have, so I’m not sure why humans would be special.

Software that can correct itself?