The Top NFT Tech of 2021

20 Dec 2021
Editorials

Welcome back and Happy Holidays! Here at MarketSquare we cover everything from DeFi and NFTs to Blockchain Games and Wallets. From Monday to Friday, we bring you some of our top finds from across the cryptosphere and serve it up to you in the most fun and entertaining way possible. In today’s special holiday edition, we’re featuring the Top NFT Tech of 2021! Check it out!

The Best in NFT Tech

Hey there MarketSquare fam! 👋

How was 2021 for you? A lot has changed over the past year, and it can be hard to keep up at the best of times. Having said this, if you’ve been following our articles and videos that bring you the latest in NFTs, Blockchain Gaming, and more, then you should be pretty savvy with what’s been going on. By now you ought to be well ahead of the pack when it comes to navigating the increasingly techno-integrated landscape of the cryptosphere. Hopefully you’ve followed us on Twitter and signed up for a MarketSquare.io profile so you can take part in NFT giveaways and contests on the regular. If you haven’t yet…well, what are you waiting for!?

Now how have you been securing all those sick PFPs? Do you know how they were created? Are any of them interactive? NFTs have become a household name this year, but do you know what’s under the hood? Learn more about your undeniably legit JPEGs as we count down the Top 3 NFT Technologies of 2021. So without further delay, here we go!

#3: Programmatically Generated Interactive Artwork

While an image itself may not be relevant to every kind of NFT, 2021 has seen the emergence of a new breed of generative interactive artwork that goes well beyond the realm of randomly assigned traits or mutant serums. One awe-inspiring example of this leap in innovation is a prolifically crafty coder known as ‘thedude ’ whose creations are, ‘interactive…built by code, generated at mint.’

Some of thedude’s dudes evolve while others are clickable and follow your mouse’s cursor; some even adopt different traits for special occasions. All of them were created using 100% code, and all are generated at mint: no Adobe apps, no iPads, no paint, no paper. And the results are not only ridiculously excellent, but they are also an entirely original concept that undoubtedly opens the door to lots of potentials and will undoubtedly change the way you think about NFTs forever.

Yeah. See. There’s no way we can have a 2021 NFT tech list without talking about this mind-blowing breakthrough. Hats off to thedude and his dudes!

Learn more about thedude’s creations in this excellent article by Reece Smith, ‘Look Mom! No Artist!’ - the dudes NFTs on MarketSquare

#2: Multi-Signature Security

Security. Security. Security.

Regardless of how safe we think we’re being, any one of us has the potential to get scammed. Whether you’re tricked or outright hacked, having a compromised mnemonic recovery phrase can be devastating. All of your funds and NFTs could ninja vanish into an attacker’s wallet. Did the scammer leave a couple pieces you want to rescue, but you just need a little gas first? Best of luck! There are bots that instantly sweep newly-received funds, sometimes within the same block, making it nearly impossible to combat.

If you happen to be an NFT creator, the consequences can be downright disastrous. For all your best intentions, hopes, and aspirations, a compromised mnemonic also means your projects are compromised too. A malicious actor with access to your recovery phrase can change nearly everything; manipulate artwork, delete all metadata and images, even collect royalties along the way. An absolute nightmare scenario I’ve seen play out repeatedly.

So what can you do to mitigate this? A hardware wallet like Ledger can be a god-send, but people still get tricked into entering their recovery phrase online, so that alone won’t protect you. The answer lies in Multi-Signature security, by far the best solution for protecting your assets. Simply put, instead of relying on a single point of failure, you have a special address that requires the approval of many wallets before a transaction can be considered valid. You can require that either all or a subset of signatures are needed to produce transactions.

For instance, your Multi-Signature address could be comprised of a cold wallet, a hot wallet, and a Ledger wallet where either all or 2-of-3 signatures are needed. You could have a 3-of-5 scheme, a 5-of-5 scheme, a 5-of-7 scheme, or more. You can even split the signing requirements across multiple users’ wallets. The main idea is that access to one account is useless to an attacker. They would need to compromise many or all of your wallets to do any damage. And for that, Multi-Signature security earns the #2 spot on our list.

To learn more or get started securing your assets using Multi-Signature protection, check out Gnosis Safe, The gold standard for corporations and individuals alike

#1: IPFS

IPFS isn’t a new technology, but it has certainly made its presence and necessity well-known in 2021. In a year that’s seen a sharp increase in scams and rugs, nothing has been more important than where your precious PFPs are stored. And go ahead, take a quick look at your favorite NFTs. Where’s the metadata stored? Where are the images stored? Take all the time you need; this is important to understand…

If it’s not on IPFS and is instead privately hosted, not only can your piece just disappear, but you will also have zero evidence for what image is yours. Given this fact, can you genuinely say that you actually even own your NFT? I’d argue that you can’t.

IPFS is a distributed persistent storage network. An IPFS address is a resource’s storage location and a hash of the resource itself. This hash is unique for every conceivable piece of data, much like a fingerprint. Even one bit being off changes the hash all together, so your metadata and image hashes being registered on-chain is all the evidence you’d ever need. Compare this with centralized storage where your data lives on a private server somewhere. Now consider that server goes down or gets deleted…Now prove you own your image. You can’t, because all that’s registered on-chain is a web address pointing to something that’s no longer there.

Sadly, what I’ve seen again and again is that a project’s team bails and leaves the mods and community scrambling to figure out how to revive the project, only to discover all data was privately hosted. Beyond the nearly impossible issue of gaining control of the contract and the potentially costly (tens of thousands of dollars) remedy of dropping a whole new collection to holders, you cannot provably verify who owns what image.

Terrifying, but true. You might not actually own your NFT even though ownership is supposed to be the entire point. Had the metadata or images been stored via IPFS, you could, at the absolute least, prove what’s yours. And for this, IPFS is, by far, the #1 NFT technology of 2021!

Happy Holidays, MarketSquarians!

Well, folks, that just about concludes our nifty NFT journey for today. We learned about groundbreaking PFPs you can click, the best way to CYA (cover your assets), and how you can be 100% sure your NFTs are rug-resistant and provably yours. I have a feeling this is just the veritable tip of the iceberg, and I’m personally excited to see what comes next in the world of NFTs!

We hope you enjoyed our little holiday side-quest and wish you nothing but the best this holiday season and throughout 2022!

See you soon, MSQ fam! Much love to you all!

For updates on new NFT drops, NFT news, and more, make sure you follow OurVillage on SubStack, and don’t forget to follow Farmer Joe and Lumberjack Larry on Twitter.


Make sure to sign up for a MarketSquare.io profile and join our growing NFT community on Discord so you can stay on top of news, the latest drops, and everything non-fungible.

Simon is a developer and writer for ARK.io. When he isn't busy programming microcontrollers, documenting Blockchain software, and saving the world from centralization, he enjoys creating music and exploring the latest technological trends.
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