© The Author(s) 2017. The overarching goal of the Gene Ontology (GO) Consortium is to provide researchers in biology and biomedicine with all current functional information concerning genes and the cellular context under which these occur. When the GO was started in the 1990s surprisingly little attention had been given to how functional information about genes was to be uniformly captured, structured in a computable form, and made accessible to biologists. Because knowledge of gene, protein, ncRNA, and molecular complex roles is continuously accumulating and changing, the GO needed to be a dynamic resource, accurately tracking ongoing research results over time. Here I describe the progress that has been made over the years towards this goal, and the work that still remains to be done, to make of the Gene Ontology (GO) Consortium realize its goal of offering the most comprehensive and up-to-date resource for information on gene function.