I am a computer science professor by trade, and my area of interest is artificial intelligence. This book served as the primary text for a course on the philosophy of mind that I took while I was in graduate school. This was my first experience with the world of philosophy. This is a first rate text on the subject.
From past studies of AI/CS, cognitive science, and psychology I can tell that this is an important volume. This is a collection of studies of the philosophy of mind, it is a very self-contained read. This is an important feature of this book; it assumes little to no prior knowledge about philosophy. This book was edited by David Chalmers, and is comprised of over 60 essays from prominent philosophers spanning hundreds of years.
The treatment reads much like any thorough text on psychology would. You are not just reading about the current state of the field. The book starts from the beginning--the very beginning. The first chapters start with Rene Descartes (1600s) and Thomas Huxley (1800s). This book takes you through a number of phases of the philosophy of mind. Those who are familiar with the history of psychology will find some common ground in behaviorism, functionalism, and a number of the important questions that are grappled with over the course of the book. When read sequentially you will see how various theories are established, argued, and later refuted (or at least argued against) in later work. More contemporary works include John Searle's "Can computers think?", an essay that you may have encountered in a modern course on artificial intelligence.
This is a good read for those who are interested in AI, psychology, or cognitive science. While I hardly claim to be an expert in the field of philosophy of mind, there are a lot of interesting questions that I have grappled with in the past. There are also a number of question that hadn't occurred to me in the past given that I was trained as a scientist, and not a philosopher.
The author has even remarked that there will eventually be a companion piece on the philosophy of science. I am excited about the prospect of this companion, and look forward to studying the two volumes together in the future.