TRON Bull had been back from his getaway in Dominica for a week now. He was sitting at the table in the dine-in area of his San Francisco loft, salting his baked mixed veggies topped with sweet balsamic. Feroz and Agustin, two of his friends from work, were meeting him for some dessert and some local improv comedy at 8:00pm. Daydreaming about Dominica’s sunsets made him lose track of time, though. In a snap-back moment, he took a glance down at his smartwatch. “7:59” flashed up on the screen.
“I am going to be late!”
The Comedy Club was a 15-minute walk. Maybe it would be a 10-minute run. Feroz and Agustin went ahead and got a table. TRON Bull texted them that he was literally running late. Out of breath, he finally arrived at the entrance.
“8:09 – wow! I made great time!”
His smartwatch had a TRON Bull NFT from APENFT.io as a background. This reminded TRON Bull about some questions he had regarding NFTs.
“There is no one better to ask than Feroz and Agustin,” TRON Bull thought.
Three desserts were ordered, and the three friends sat back in their chairs, exhaling a deep breath.
“It’s been a long week at work,” Agustin said.
Feroz agreed, “Tell me about it! We’ve all been getting ready for Season Three of the 2022 TRON Grand Hackathon, and it’s been a lot of coordinating, calls, and communication.”
“Hacka-TRONs are so fun,” TRON Bull declared. “What’s your favorite track?”
“NFTs. No question,” Feroz replied without hesitation.
“Really? That’s mine, too,” Agustin affirmed.
“That’s so interesting! On the way here, I remembered some questions I have been meaning to ask you two about NFTs.” TRON Bull was hoping his buddies would oblige.
“That’s cool! Throw them at us.” Agustin was curious.
“Well, first off, what’s the origin of NFTs?”
“There’s some debate on that,” Feroz began. “The Colored Coins Project, back in 2012, proposed a way to represent physical assets on a blockchain. So, technically, they implemented NFT-like systems that were built upon over the next two years.”
“Yeah. Then Quantum happened,” Agustin continued. “On May 2nd, 2014, American artist Kevin McCoy minted a non-fungible token called ‘Quantum’ on the Namecoin blockchain. The dimensions were 1×1 pixel, making it the smallest possible image.”
“Whoa,” TRON Bull was fully engaged.
“CryptoKitties was next,” Feroz added. “In 2017, the blockchain game CryptoKitties was launched on the Ethereum network. The game quickly became a sensation, with players spending millions of dollars on digital cats that were stored on the blockchain as non-fungible tokens (NFTs). The success of CryptoKitties showed the world the potential of NFTs.”
“Then there’s the Bored Ape Yacht Club, the biggest NFT project to date.”
The three friends recognized the voice and turned to see H.E. Justin Sun.
“H-E!!!” TRON Bull was giddy.
“Want to join us? We were just answering TRON Bull’s questions about NFTs,” Feroz explained.
“Sure! I am meeting some others, but I’m early. I’d love to sit for a bit with you.” Sun sat down in the fourth chair at the table. “Yuga Labs, the company behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club, was founded in 2018. They launched BAYC in 2021 and now have over 1 million users with over 676,000 ETH in transaction volume. That’s around $1 billion USD.”
“That’s insane! What would make one NFT so valuable?” TRON Bull was pretty confused.
“Great question,” Agustin jumped in. “I’ve heard one of the OG-est of OGs in crypto and NFTs, Rizzle, say a lot of projects have the potential to become their own micro-ecosystems and function independently from the broader NFT landscape. Rizzle taught me that while the price of crypto will always rise and fall, the most valuable projects will be the ones that build sustainable communities that in turn keep caring about what is being built.”
“Yeah,” Feroz continued. “NFTs are useful in a number of ways, and it’s their utility, or at least perceived utility, that makes them valuable. For example, those who hold a Bored Ape NFT have had access to an exclusive club of sorts. They get special invites and cool merch. They get the chance to co-brand with major brands and products. Some of them have even created music groups together. Overall, someone could say a lot of return on investment has come for Bored Ape holders.”
“For sure, but NFTs are more than just digital ape art that gives access to exclusive clubs,” Sun interjected. “The Bored Apes and another project called CryptoPunks brought NFTs mainstream. From there, their evolution has been in fast-forward development mode. NFTs as we know them today were defined by William Entriken. In 2018, he was the lead author of what’s called the ERC-721, a type of NFT token. He wrote that NFTs can represent ownership over digital or physical assets, like physical property — think houses, unique artwork, virtual collectibles — as well as ‘negative value assets,’ like loans. He’s actually a judge at this season’s Hackathon, by the way, which is cool. Now, there are all types of NFT token smart contracts. The bottom line is that NFTs have the potential of disrupting every industry.”
“That may seem hard to believe with the current market sentiment regarding NFTs,” Agustin pivoted.
“I was wondering that,” TRON Bull tilted his head.
Agustin explained, “The market has definitely been down. It has been picking up in the last couple of weeks, though. Up to now, we have really only seen NFTs as digital artwork, in-game items, music, collectibles, avatars, IDs, social club memberships, tickets, and rewards solutions. I don’t think we have even gone below the tip of the iceberg with how NFT technology can be used.”
“I couldn’t agree more. We will continue to see NFTs as virtual art, gaming and metaverse assets, profile pictures, and all of that,” Feroz assured.
“Right! But the technology and potential utility reach much further than that,” Sun expounded. “In the future, NFTs will change the way we earn credentials, pay for civil services, buy real estate, process legal documents, fund scientific research, listen to music, produce film, make doctor’s appointments, store health records, build resumes, and more!”
“WOW! I had no idea! You all have blown my mind,” TRON Bull’s head was spinning. His tummy was rumbling, too.
“Speaking of blowing your mind,” Sun concluded, “I hear the desserts and improv here are mind-blowing! Your desserts are arriving now, and so are the people I’m connecting with.”
“Good to see you,” the three friends said, almost in unison, as Sun met up with his party.
TRON Bull thanked Feroz and Agustin for the lesson on NFT history, value, and variations. Then, the three enjoyed their desserts as they remembered the last time they laughed together watching the comedy improv.