Bikes. Are they what they are because of the sum of their parts, or is it a specific part of the bike that is THAT bike.
For example. If someone said "Brand X bike Y" is a great bike. Are they talking about that particular arrangement of parts, or are they simply talking about the frame? If someone takes that same bike and changes some parts, is it still a great bike?
I personally think that the frame IS the bike. All of the parts around it are simply accessories and can be swapped without affecting the provenance of the bike. (Drastic changes excluded... no dura ace to tiagra etc.)
The real reason I'm asking this question in Foo is this. What about for a person? If you were in a hypothetical situation where a friend of yours was in a horrible accident and got cut up into a few pieces, what piece would you save? (Assuming that in this situation you have the ability to save any piece individually and get a fully working human again.)
Consider the following examples:
If someone's arm is cut off, the rest of their body is still THEM.
If all of someone's limbs get cut off, the rest of their body is still THEM.
What if someone's head gets separated from their body. Is their body THEM or is their head THEM?
Is robocop still the man he was before?
So, is the brain of a human equivalent to the frame of a bike?