February 16, 2023 MDG

Generative Entertainment Milestones

Generative Entertainment Milestones  In chronological order.  


  1. 1956: The first computer-generated music is created by an IBM computer in Australia.
  2. 1966: The Yule Log TV, a holiday program featuring a looping video of a burning fireplace, debuts on WPIX-TV in New York City.
  3. 1979: The first video game with procedural generation, Rogue, is released.
  4. 1982: The Weather Channel begins broadcasting, featuring generative content such as weather maps and graphics.
  5. 1985: Max Headroom, a television series featuring a computer-generated character, debuts on HBO.
  6. 1998: Brian Eno releases “Generative Music 1,” a music album generated by a software program that creates music in real time.
  7. 2011: “Hip Hop Beats to Study/Relax to” YouTube channel is created, featuring 24/7 live streaming of lo-fi hip hop music with generative visuals.
  8. 2016: “Radio Garden,” a web-based platform that allows users to listen to live radio stations from around the world, features a generative interface that shows a spinning globe and allows users to navigate to different locations.
  9. 2017: “The Infinite Now,” a short film created by filmmaker Armand Dijcks and photographer Ray Collins, features generative visuals that create a sense of infinite movement in a series of still images.
  10. 2022: Genuary is held for the second time, featuring a range of generative art and creative coding challenges. (c) Mark Ghuneim 2023


  1. “Nothing, Forever” – a generative storytelling experiment using Twitch as the platform.
  2. “AI Dungeon” – an interactive storytelling game that uses AI-generated text to create dynamic storylines.
  3. “Minecraft” – a popular video game that allows players to create and explore procedurally generated worlds, and has also been used to host virtual events such as the Travis Scott Concert.
  4. “Google DeepDream” – a software that uses deep learning algorithms to transform images into dream-like, hallucinogenic visuals.
  5. “Infinite Jest” – a novel by David Foster Wallace that features numerous generative elements, such as a filmography of made-up movies and a detailed timeline of future events.
  6. “AIVA” – an artificial intelligence program that composes original music in a range of styles and genres.
  7. “The Infinite Album” – a music album created by musician Bryce Dessner that features generative elements that change each time the album is played.

As we venture into uncharted territory in the realm of synthetic media, it’s important to provide clear definitions and vocabulary to help others understand and engage with the vision. (As someone who sees around corners, I learned this the hard way many times!!)

Looking back at the history of generative entertainment can provide a framework for moving forward in this new generative AI landscape beyond sorting, completion, summary etc and start to look at the tooling ++++ around creative uses