“NFTs” , Arweave is Here For You!
During this week, a group of Arweavers built an impressive tool called CheckMyNFT that rates the storing strength of NFTs based on the reliability of the provider used & whether the asset is linked directly to the ERC-721 token. But before we dive into it, let’s have a quick introduction in NFTs and why Arweave is the best place to store them.
NFTs or Non-Fungible Tokens
A non-fungible token (NFT) is a type of cryptographic token that represents a unique asset. NFTs are the tokenized versions of digital or real-world assets. They function as verifiable proofs of authenticity and ownership within a blockchain network. NFTs are not interchangeable with each other and introduce scarcity to the digital world.
Characteristics of Non-Fungible Tokens
- Rare – The value of NFTs comes from their scarcity. Although NFT developers can create any amount of non-fungible tokens, they often limit the tokens to increase rarity.
- Indivisible – Although not set in stone, most non-fungible tokens are indivisible into smaller units. You either purchase the entire amount of, say, a digital art piece, or purchase no art at all.
- Unique – This is perhaps the most significant characteristic of them all. NFTs have a permanent information tab that records their uniqueness. Think of this information as a certificate of authenticity.
Current NFT Weakpoints
We’ve seen interest and demand for NFTs skyrocket over the past few months. One often overlooked aspect of this phenomenon is how the NFT assets are stored. What happens to an NFT whose audio file is lost or digital artwork is deleted from a centralized server? The owner could end up with a worthless ERC-721 token with no asset to back it up. This has happened with examples like ‘Tron Dogs’ and ‘NiftyMoji’ where the projects appear to be abandoned and the associated assets are gone.
In the case of cryptocurrencies, like ERC20 tokens for example, you can be confident that the token that you own will still exist in 10-20-30-50-100 years so long as the Ethereum network is maintained by miners and the community. In the case of NFTs, there really is no such guarantee of longevity for the asset itself unless the asset is saved on Arweave and if the asset is linked directly to the ERC-721 contract. With Arweave, for an average (~10mb) NFT, the storage cost is $0.05, forever, so why wouldn’t you do it?
NFT Permanence with Arweave
Non-fungible token (NFT) pieces are minted, sold, and traded every day. Hosted on smart contract platforms, NFT tokens themselves are as indestructible as the chain they reside on. However, oftentimes NFTs’ actual digital assets, metadata, and code are stored off-chain on centralized servers. This information is sometimes seeded to IPFS, but remains at risk of being lost forever if the wrong hard drive fails or node goes offline — just like the centralised web. Without their associated data and assets, such as digital graphics for an NFT-based art piece, NFTs themselves become functionally worthless to the end-user.
Arweave is designed to permanently store virtually unlimited quantities of data on-chain. This data is replicated many times across a global network of miners, who in turn receive rewards for storing said data. Arweave’s permanence and reliability make it an excellent fit for storing the assets, metadata, and code that back NFTs. Due to Arweave’s ‘pay once, store forever’ data storage model, NFT creators using Arweave can rest assured that their NFT’s assets will be available hundreds of years in the future.
What is CheckMyNFT?
A group of Arweavers created CheckMyNFT to help shed light on the importance of asset storage for the owners, creators and platforms who are issuing them. CheckMyNFT rates your NFT asset storage based on the reliability of the provider used and whether the asset is linked directly to the ERC-721 token. It would be a shame if someone spent a significant amount of money on NFTs stored on a centralized service and a couple years down the line the issuer ceases operations and the assets are lost. Storage of the assets is an easily overlooked aspect of NFTs but one that is fundamental to their value.
Asset storage strength : STRONG
Asset Storage Strength : MEDIUM
Asset Storage Strength : POOR
CheckMyNFT‘s team also understand that this space is evolving so rapidly and that creators and platforms are experimenting with different methods of minting and storage, so in no way they are trying to shame anyone.
Overall, They hope that through CheckMyNFT more people will understand the importance of storage to NFTs and as a result, understand the value in porting their NFT assets somewhere that is truly permanent.
Follow them on Twitter.