Non-fungible tokens are unique digital assets that give the buyers exclusive ownership rights. These NFTs can be a digital interpretation of anything, they can even be in the form of videos. From real estate to music files to rare pieces of art- anything can be an NFT.
Starting from the beginning, let’s look at what is the history behind the NFTs.
2012-2013 The concept of colored coins.
Colored coins are a type of cryptocurrency that began as an improvised creation of Bitcoin miners. The initial concept was to utilize the Bitcoin blockchain to store assets such as digital collectibles, company shares, and more.
The colored coins are blockchain-based tokens that reflect real-world assets and can be used to verify ownership of the assets.NFTs were inspired by the concept of this colored coin.
Crypto art is a method of making digital art unique and hence valuable. It works by “tokenizing” or “minting” a digital file after signing them and hence claiming their unique status.
CryptoPunks, Rare Pepe, and CryptoKitties are examples of the cultural phenomena that inspired the CryptoArt category and eventually paved the way for NFTs. These digital art pieces became famous(viral) because people were willing to spend significant sums of money to own them.
Kevin McCoy and Anil Das used Monegraph (Monetized Graphics) to tokenize the first crypto art on the NameCoin Blockchain.
2014- The first NFT creation.
On May 3rd, 2014, a man called Kevin McCoy created “Quantum,” a non-fungible coin, long before the crypto art industry boomed. Both he and his wife Jennifer are first-rate digital artists.
Quantum is a digital image of an octagon, having concentric circles, and hypnotically pulsing in brilliant colors. The one-of-a-kind art project (2014-2021) is currently for sale for $7 million.
2015- Counterparty and the Spells of Genesis.
Counterparty is a peer-to-peer financial network based on the Bitcoin blockchain. This platform provided decentralized exchange, also enabling trade in all types of currencies (tradable).
It teamed up with the Spells of Genesis creators in April 2015. The makers of the Spells of Genesis game were among the first to issue in-game assets using Counterparty and initiate an ICO(Initial coin offering). BitCrystals was the name of their in-game currency.
2016: The year of Rare Pepes on Counterparty
In October 2016, a meme named ‘Rare Pepes’ entered the Counterparty platform. They featured an iconic frog character- Pepe, the frog.
In 2017, as Euthereum garnered an extensive user base, these characters were also traded by the people.
2017- CrytpoArt platform.
Portion, The 21st-century Auction house, saw its founder Jason Rosenstein co-host the first live Rare Pepe auction at the first Rare Digital Art Festival alongside Louis Parker.
This is where the CryptoArt platform was founded, with the Rare Pepe Wallet. CryptoArt is a platform where artists from all over the globe can submit and sell their work (digital art!)- all online.
Cryptopunks , Cryptokitties and the Bored Ape Yacht Club.
Larva Labs created unique characters called Cryptopunks in the year 2017. With no two characters alike (hence the non-fungible aspect) and the total number of characters capped at 10,000, Cryptopunks was a Bitcoin experiment from the 1990s. They may be regarded as a mix of ERC721 and ERC20.
CryptoKitties is a blockchain-based virtual game that lets participants adopt, breed, and trade virtual cats. Their immense popularity and news coverage from channels like CNBC and Fox News earned funding from top investors.
Things just took the pace from here; with the Bored ape Yacht club and many other NFTs selling for millions of dollars, the field of Non-fungible digital tokens emerged.
The future of NFT may not be commented upon now, but one thing is for sure, they have given opportunities to many creators and investors and have opened a new realm for everyone.