BOOM! You hear me?!? BOOM!
Ladies, gentlemen, and everyone else. I'm truly excited to share with you a historic day. Steem's got NFTs!!! NFTs unlock the ability of the Steem Blockchain to track anything in the world individually and tie the tokenization to a global market. I see wonderful and beautiful things for Steem and Steem Engine!
Why here on Steem?
Steem has some great advantages. There's an existing community that can communicate through immutable social media. The transactions are fast with 3 second block times. Account names are human readable so I have a sense of the person, business, or community I'm doing business with. Transactions are free. So, I'm not forced to pay a gas transfer fee every time I want to take an action with my digital assets!
Where can I find the changes?
Ok, so it's day one, and I don't want to over hype this thing too crazy, but the token creation is live on the site. Please visit https://next.steem-engine.com. You'll also notice we've upgraded the look and feel of the dex. However, if you don't like the new look and feel you're free to use steem-engine.com. We know there's a lot of work still left to be done, but our team is really excited for our start here.
What's an NFT?
The term NFT is an acronym that stands for non-fungible token. It means that the tokens in the series are unique and have a unique identifier to track them.
It usually helps to explain with an example. If I send you a Steem you don't ask me "which one did you send?" because it doesn't matter because they're all convertible. They're fungible.
If I send you a Splinterlands card you'll likely ask "which one did you send?" and if I say "Lord of Darkness" you might again repeat "which Lord of Darkness did you send?" because each and every card in Splinterlands is unique. Right now just the card ID and stats associated with leveling up will change, but in the future cards could have experience, items, and special abilities based on how it has been used in the game or other player choices.
Why does this matter?
I think that NFTs are key to unlocking the full potential of the blockchain revolution. A few major sectors are inventory management, gaming, and finance. Let's hone in on a few examples.
When you make a product you could give each one a unique ID. When someone buys that product a token attached to that unique ID can be transferred to the purchaser. It's now proof of ownership. At that point they have the option to redeem the product, or interact with it. They could transfer it. They could also query the blockchain to determine where it is or what the status is.
Things like this exist now, but it's less secure because without the token it's harder to prove true ownership. Blockchain tracks ownership like having a public receipt for the purchase stored on computers all around the world. I think Amazon, one of the largest companies in the world, will ultimately switch to being decentralized or eaten piece by piece by companies that can provide the same service, cheaper, with better and more accurate tracking and verified ownership powered by blockchain.
You've spent $60 dollars on a game you love. You spend hours playing and have collected many great and wonderful items. You've beaten the game or are satisfied. Now you're done... but you can't sell anything because you don't actually own anything. So, you're out $60. Or maybe you're stuck and would like to purchase an item to help you get farther along, but you can't buy, sell, or trade items for dollars. So, back to grinding slowly.
With a blockchain based inventory every item you get can be a unique token. Now you can trade those tokens on an exchange. You can literally get paid to play the game you love because the gear that drops can be sold for cash. You're still getting the same broadsword and chainmail, but now it's worth $$$. So, when you're done playing sell your gear and lambo up. Or do what we do on Splinterlands: rent digital assets for passive income.
Lastly, you'll know so much about the market. With Splinterlands we can track how many cards exist, who own them, how often are they used, how frequently do they win, who is willing to sell them, and at what price are they selling them. There's more information available about our cards and our game than you can get with traditional centralized games. Players who are exposed to this I think will have a hard time going back to where they don't actually own things or have the same level of information about them.
Every insurance contract, car title, and house could all be tokenized. There will be whole industries that are forced to evolve because of blockchain. Know what debts exist, know which accounts hold the debt, see who has purchased some portion of a tokenized house. There's an endless new array of how physically unique items can be tied to international borderless transcations. In the end it'll come down to unparalleled access to information. You'll know more about what you're buying, selling, and trading here than you ever could with traditional closed source systems.
Where's the project at?
It's day 1. We've got the NFT creation on site. We're working out a few bugs on production prohibiting images, but the token creation itself is there. We're working on getting the market live.
As I'm exploring more personally I think we need some general explanation how the NFT system works. Things like fees, and term definitions aren't there. So, we need some more documentation around the experience.
What's the vision?
The goal is for people to be able to trade anything here on Steem through Steem-Engine. We've just opened up a huge toolset for people to use to do that by allowing the tokens and thus products they represent to be tracked individually. It's a big step for the Engine and a big step for the chain.
We'll have a lot of work to do on the site to make it even better, but for now just raise a glass and toast the team.