For a long time we've known it was important for us to think more about the application and effect of our apps, rather than the underpinning technologies. We've reflected a lot, therefore, on the nature of what was created by our generative music apps.
At the core of it all is live music, music that only exists at that one moment in time. Of course everyone has different tastes and different definitions of what constitutes music.
Putting that to one side for a moment, experiencing something that you will never hear again, something purely "In the Moment", can be quite profound and reflective. It can help remind you of, and to embrace and appreciate, the live nature of life.
Names are great as they give an easy label to something, but they can also limit how you think about them.
Although we still use the term Generative Music, "Generative" is a rather dry, technical term that can mean many things. It generally refers to a method or a system using chance, not AI, to create something, such as ambient, left-field music.
In 2012 we were deliberating the nature of our apps. Our company is called Intermorphic and we were playing around with things like "input → music output", "inmotion" and a few other things.
We had a facepalm moment as the answer was staring us in the face - "intermorphic" : "in the moment".
Athough there is great artistry in creating generative music, for a listener there is no "meaning" in what is created.
We found that using "InMo" as a term gave us a new found freedom to think again about "meaning" and how we might be able to somehow link that in to the output. To that end we had started playing around with Text to Music. This is a technique where user input, in the form of text, can be used to generate a deterministic seed for creating melodies that can imbue the InMo Music, for a listener, with some meaning and context.
As it's personal and the words can be used for reflection we decided to refer to this specific kind of InMo Music as - "reflective music".