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What are NFTs, the digital assets that are transforming the collection of art and digital goods?
At 15, Mark Cuban realizes that he can profit from the philatelic market. The prices varied so much and there were such inefficiencies that he figured out how to buy 15-cent stamps and sell them for $ 25 an hour later to save for college.
The famous billionaire investor – he owns the NBA Dallas Mavericks team – once saw how the collection simply places a different value on a physical good, but now he believes in the revolution of NFT (Non-Fungible Tokens), which is the version digital stamps . , art or any other tangible or intangible product to which a series of users end up giving value. These assets are gaining ground and are part of this new culture in which blockchain and cryptocurrencies are also fully integrated.
Gold is precious because we all believe it is
Cuban reflected in early 2021 on this revolution in new stores of value. Many talk about bitcoin as those stores of value that replace or can replace what gold has always stood for, but for Cubans everything is actually part of the same idea.
is that as he explained then, that gold has become the store of value par excellence is part of «a narrative. There are a lot of precious metals that meet the same requirements, but gold has more buyers. When the number of Buyers go up, the price goes up, and vice versa. There is nothing unique or special about gold except for the fact that enough people believe that story and buy gold.
It is the same thinking that other economists and analysts have made in the past. Yuval Noah Harari spoke about it in his bestseller “Sapiens: From Animals to Gods” and explained how the value of gold and silver “is purely cultural” and had become this store of value to perfectly fill the ‘requirement of «universal trust». We value gold because so many other people (the majority of the world’s population) do.
From what you touch and see to what you don’t touch (but you can see)
NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) are digital assets that are essentially an extension of this same idea. We used to value tangible goods that we could touch and see (gold, stamps, artwork), and now we increasingly value intangible goods that we mostly see, but probably don’t touch.
Cryptocurrencies are an approximation of this principle, but NFTs go a step further and apply this store of value concept to these more collector-oriented items.
A digital Pokémon letter is a good example of this new collectible stamp format, and the concept is the same one that became famous years ago with this surprising fever of cryptokitties (Cryptokitties) which are in fact still active and are being traded at prices that for many are absurd. Why did a digital cat avatar cost $ 115,000? Easy: enough people thought it was worth it. There is no more.
What are NFTs and what are their characteristics
Unlike what happens with cryptocurrencies, NFTs cannot be traded with each other because no two NFTs are the same: your letter from a crypto kitty is unique, just like this piece of art. digital or any other intangible asset that falls within this definition.
As explained in Coindesk, there is a clear analogy between an NFT and a ticket for a music festival: in this ticket there is information about the buyer of the ticket, the date of the event and its location. These entries, like the NFTs, are personal and unique.
Most of these “tokens” (which can be coins, stamps, works of art, or crypto lawyers for example) are based on the standards of the Ethereum network and its blockchain.
This made them easier to use when buying and selling, and that services such as MetaMask or MyEtherWallet (wallets that allow interaction with Ethereum) are benchmarks in this type of transaction. In addition to this, NFTs have several characteristics:
Strangely unique: these goods have many analogies to works of art, of which there may be copies (it is even easier to make copies of digital works), but here the owner can certify that he is the only one and actual owner of the original work, although it can be easily shared on the Internet (and it is). It’s a curious situation and a shift in the value we place on physical and digital works of art.
Non-interoperable: You cannot use a Cryptokitties avatar / card in other similar games like CryptoPunk.
Indivisible: Unlike cryptocurrencies, NFTs cannot be broken down into smaller parts and have full value as a whole entity or token, nothing more. You cannot have 1/1000 of a crypto kitty.
Indestructible: The data of an NFT is stored in the blockchain through a smart contract, which means it cannot be destroyed, deleted or replicated.
Absolute Ownership: Unlike music or movies, if you buy any of these goods, your property is absolutely yours. You don’t buy a license to watch the movie or listen to the song, but that intangible asset is entirely yours.
Verifiable: the blockchain makes it possible to verify something much more complex to demonstrate or certify with subjects such as the art collection or stamps, for example: the blockchain keeps a history of who bought or sold an NFT and who is its current (absolute owner), including the original creator from whom this digital asset was purchased in the first place.
NFTs as the future of business
We return to Cuban, an absolute believer in this type of digital asset. In his opinion, NFTs are the future of business.
«This generation knows that a digital contract and the digital asset it represents or a crypto asset is a better investment than the traditional asset that can be seen, touched or felt.»
This is of course starting to make sense with this renewed boom that we are seeing with crypto-currencies and in which bitcoin and ether are the protagonists. Cryptocats have even been followed by memes like Nyan Cat, but on top of that, NFTs are also starting to have support even in very traditional segments, as the new auction hosted by the auction house has shown. Christie’s.
This house will be auctioning a digital artwork titled «Everydays: The First 5000 Days» created by a famous artist named Mike Winkelmann, better known by his alias, Beeple.
The work is a collage of more than 5,000 images created (one per day) by this artist in the last 13 years. The auction, by the way, must be paid in ETH, and at Christie’s they indicate both the address of the purse and that of the smart contract that validates and certifies that the work – an image of 21,069 x 21,069 pixels) is unique.
Beeple, who has made millions with his works, has now become the greatest exponent of that theoretical revolution that art and collecting could live with NFTs. And, as Cuban said, «art is art. It has always been available in almost unlimited ways.»
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How to Invest and Buy Cryptocurrencies: A Beginner’s Guide
Cryptocurrencies have earned the trust of millions of investors of all sizes and around the world. The reason? They offer what traditional currencies cannot, and that is total autonomy and freedom of choice over their assets.
However, since it is such a young product, there are generally doubts about how cryptocurrencies can be bought and invested. That is why in this article we explain everything you need to know to break into this market.
What are cryptocurrencies?
Also known as cryptocurrencies, they are virtual currencies that are used for crypto-protected digital exchanges. Then it will be a totally digital currency, proposed as an alternative to traditional currencies due to its high level of security and decentralization.
Cryptocurrencies are not controlled or regulated by states through their central banks, as is the case with traditional currencies. These virtual currencies, on the other hand, are registered in decentralized databases called blockhains.
Bitcoin is probably the most popular cryptocurrency to date. It was also the first to start operating in 2009 and is now recognized as a means of payment by the Spanish government. However, there are currently more than 7,000 of these virtual currencies.
Why buy cryptocurrencies in 2021? Benefits of investing in Cryptocurrencies
Cryptocurrencies are becoming increasingly important in the global economy. On the one hand, this is due to several reasons, on the one hand the loss of confidence in traditional currencies and on the other hand the various advantages of these digital currencies, including:
Because they are not centralized or regulated under the control of any government, cryptocurrencies allow instant transfers between users around the world. This makes it a simple, fast and secure means of international transactions.
The database in which cryptocurrency transactions are recorded is known as blockchains. These are absolutely confidential. So the Treasury Department has no way of knowing who is buying or selling cryptocurrencies, which means that those who have them are not required to declare them. What could result in the payment of taxes are the capital increases that occur when selling a cryptocurrency.
Anyone can buy or sell cryptocurrencies from anonymity. This means that the names of the parties involved will not be public if they do not want to, and thanks to the security of blockchains, there is no way to violate that confidentiality.
All transactions made with cryptocurrencies are protected by an encryption system. This guarantees your confidentiality on the one hand and your security on the other. When conducting a cryptocurrency transaction, two-step authentication may be required that requires not only a password, but also a security key sent to the mobile phone.
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are not under the control of a central bank or any particular nation that can determine their value or the amount of current assets. Rather, these virtual currencies are only exposed to fluctuations caused by supply and demand. Therefore, they are closely related to the confidence they generate in investors.
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By Ashley Sharp, Executive Director at Dwell with Dignity. getty Three years ago, I was chosen to lead a growing
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