Since announcing my release of art NFTs on Kusama, I have been getting some questions lately from other artists and those in the scene who are curious about Kusama.
I wanted to take a minute to put down a bit of information about the current state of NFTs on the platform so that you can check into it, research it, and form your own conclusions.
What is Kusama?
Kusama was invented by former Ethereum CTO and Polkadot co-founder Gavin Wood, and launched in 2019 as a scalable network of specialized blockchains (known as “parachains”) built using Substrate along with code similar to that of its cousin, Polkadot.
They are here now, and will be getting better and more varied super quickly!
There are basically 3 distinct classes of NFTs proposed for Kusama so far.
- Blockchain graffiti-based NFTs using system remarks (RMRK)
- Palette based NFT functionality using a Substrate palette (Unique Network)
- Smart Contract based NFT functionality, including Ethereum/Solidity compatibility (Moonbeam)
Check out this crowdcast session, as a great way to quickly learn more about the Kusama NFT strategy, which currently breaks down into four basic goals.
- Development and implementation of RMRK.app and PolkadotAssetJS
- Development of Unique Network and PolkadotAssetJS compatibility to be used by Unique as well as RMRK.app
- Deployment of Unique Network on Kusama
- Deployment of NFT Marketplace on Unique and/or other parachains.
There’s also a more recent talk that covers the same ground as part of the 2020 Vancouver Biennale.
RMRK - a remarkable experiment
With RMRK.app, you’ll be able to make blockchain graffiti style NFTs by
abusing the system remark functionality 😜 saving their state as system remarks on the Kusama blockchain.
An app to simplify the process is launching soon.
RMRK.app is just one of several means and styles possible going forward to have NFTs on Kusama, but it makes this possible right now, without any contracts or palettes which is really awesome.
Here is Shaban Shaame of EverdreamSoft, who is most likely the first creator of an NFT ever (with Spells of Genesis in 2015), casually mentioning how RMRK reminds him of Counterparty. A priceless moment to be sure!
EverdreamSoft is proposing a solution that includes a library for asset tokenization features (NFTs) with a peer-dependency on polkadot-js and to simplify the workflow of issuing, querying and sending NFTs.
Unique Network will be a new Kusama parachain with a largely game focused approach whereby they wish to help facilitate NFT adoption in games through features like a Unity SDK integration. Their NFT solution is based on a Substrate palette rather than smart contracts.
The project aims to have live NFTs by Q2 2021 and an exchange for trading in 2021 as well. They will support fungible tokens in the same vein as the Ethereum ERC-20 standard and also shareable tokens, which they call “Re-Fungible”, in a similar manner to the Ethereum ERC-1155 standard.
Moonbeam aims to provide a 100% Ethereum compatible smart contract platform as a Polkadot parachain. While this post is about the Kusama blockchain, it’s worth noting that users of Ethereum Solidity contracts can easily migrate to Polkadot using a compatible provider like Moonbeam.
Naturally it stands to reason that Moonbeam will then become the source of many Polkadot based NFT projects too. Exciting times are ahead all the way around.
Tell me more!
Here’s a great set of documents and videos that shout help you get up to speed.
- An NFT Strategy for Kusama
- [Treasury Proposal] PolkadotAssetJS an NFT interface for developers and artists describes PolkadotAssetJS in more detail.
- Parity & Friends: Treasury and NFTs on Kusama check out this video for the initial gist of everything
- An NFT Strategy for Kusama is the latest discussion from the Vancouver Biennale, a virtual art and technology expo.
Cool, now what?
Here are some resources that I have personally found to be usefully for learning more about Kusama.
Feel free to hit me up for any advice or help regarding making art on Kusama!