Tag: opensea

5 NFT Projects Worth Holding Long-Term

One of the hottest trending topics on the internet over the last few months has been NFTs.

not investment / not financial advice. do ur own research.

NFTs are digital collectibles that usually give the owner some sort of exclusive access – whether to artwork, discord groups, or even in-person events. Anyone can create and launch an NFT, in the same way that anyone can start a business and sell a product or service, but with NFTs, the underlying value of the asset is based on rarity, utility, and social hype. Those who want to be a part of a niche community are able to prove their ownership by having the NFT.

While any industry experiencing exponential growth will attract questionable (i.e. scam) projects, those of us who are long-term bullish on NFTs and crypto focus on the fundamentals and maintain ownership in NFT projects with competent teams and strong communities.

But market optimism may fade in the future; as the hype-cycle predicts, the peaking highs are often followed by steep cliffs.

My involvement with NFTs over the last few months has been complicated. I’ve been largely focused on my day job and, when the waves are good, sneaking out to surf while trying not to forget about my responsibilities. Investing has always been a long-term play and something I don’t feel the need to make changes to very often. Besides, everyone in the Ethereum community is patiently waiting for the Merge.

My NFT Plays:

As always, NONE of this is advice, guidance, or suggestions. Please don’t take anything here as investment advice and always do your own research.

The seven NFTs cost me $5,766.92 – and, according to estimates based on floor price, I’ve lost about $505.98 on paper when you include transaction fees.

Despite losing money in some areas, the projects below are the ones I’ve chosen to hold for the long term. Whether that means during a bear market or bull, I believe in these projects for the reasons I’ll share below.

That being said, its time to shill some NFTs:

1. Surf Punks NFT

After hearing about an NFT that gives holders access to surf sessions at wave pools around the world, I was interested. Seeing Koa Smith post something about it on Instagram as well as involvement from YouTubers like Nathan Florence made me realize there was a significant amount of hype behind the project.

Given that this would be my first NFT and mint was happening the following day, figuring out how to move funds to Metamask was a challenge of its own.

My initiation to the NFT game became hard-won when the exchange wouldn’t let me move funds. Familiarizing myself with the intricacies of web3 wallets via trial and error, I finally secured the 0.15 ETH for mint plus extra for transactions fees.

After minting surf punk 246 for 0.15 eth pre-reveal, I later purchased my second Surf Punk, number 273, for 0.69 ETH. The advantage of owning two Surf Punks is that you can bring a friend to events.

Months later and @TheSurfPunks community has been growing at a pace that feels organic. I’ve met and surfed with other holders in Hawaii, hosted Twitter spaces and spoken with the founder Andre, and the Surf Punks treasury has reserved the entire Waco, Texas wave pool for a private holder-only event in March.

surf punks nft

2. Ranchy Rednecks

Twitter Spaces definitely become a source of edu-tainment about NFTs for hundreds of people every day including myself. One evening in December, during the Late Night Degens Twitter space, 3LAU, Steve Aoki, and like 500 other people helped 13 year old Nick sell out his NFT project in 2 hours.

The excitement that everyone had during that Twitter space was too much to not want to be part of it. So I decided to get in at mint price. Unlike my Surf Punks mint, I elected to mint two of these from the beginning.

I believe that purchasing two or three of an NFT in which you have conviction is a better move than buying just one because if it pops, you’re going to want to sell one to take profits and still be a part of the community. Owning more than one allows you to do that.

ranchy rednecks nft

3. Ethereum Name Service (ENS) Names

After I learned that the .eth extensions would serve as your web3 username and wallet address, I immediately needed one.

As someone who builds websites and is a proponent of owning your own domain name / internet identity, the vision of ENS really makes sense, similar to the .com top level domain names of the traditional internet.

I purchased two ENS:

  • Epigenome.eth – after doing cancer research in college and majoring in chem, I believe in epigenetics as one of the key industries to help cure diseases and even extend human life one day.
  • LNR.eth – means love n respect; 3-letter ENS names are quite rare. With only 17,576 combinations, there’s a good chance that the 3-letter ENS names become more valuable as more people are onboarded to web3.

The way it works is that users pay to register and extend registration of the ENS name. Prices are currently set at $5/year for names 5 characters or longer, $160/year for names 4 characters in length, and $640/year for names 3 characters in length.

I do believe that ENS names will become much more valuable as web3 gains traction and becomes more ubiquitous – like many areas of web3, we’re still so early.

Additionally, ENS Domains were launched April 2017 – before Curio Cards and even CryptoPunks. Historical NFTs – that is, those first few NFT projects between 2015 and 2019 – are more valuable to some people because they were first and are thus are more original, more authentic, and more rare.

ENS is undoubtedly an OG NFT and depending which one you own, may become super valuable some day.

The floor price of various ENS names on OpenSea is around 0.006 eth as of 3/13/22, with sales in the last day of as much as 1 ETH.

Purposefully under-estimating the floor price as 0 in my Spending History Table at the bottom provides a realistic viewpoint and helps ensure I don’t over-inflate my own expectations of the portfolio.

4. Kooks NFT (number 69)

This NFT is unique in that it was a whitelist gift, and there was no cost or transaction fees associated with acquiring it. Additionally, it is the only NFT on the Polygon Network that I own

@KooksNft is a smaller project right now, but I was able to meet the founder during a Twitter Spaces event that I hosted and he growth of the NFT space means Kooks could serve a valuable position as helping educate people on surf etiquette and respecting the ocean.

5. Full Send Metacard

The Nelk Boys prank videos have been going viral across social media for years. Kyle’s candidness and ability to go off-script is a skill that few creators have.

Boasting 7.27M subscribers on YouTube, watching the Nelk Boys brand grow, improve the quality of the content, form partnerships with the UFC, and finally launch an NFT has been truly incredible. After bringing UFC owner Dana White onto the podcast, Dana is now a Metacard holder which is honestly so sick.

I’ve been following these guys on Instagram and YouTube but once I heard about their NFT launching, I knew that I had to jump on board.

Since I was not on the white list, my initial plan was to purchase one on secondary between the time of whitelist and the time of public sale.

I needed to think strategically.

With over 200,000 Discord members, the project was bound to sell out immediately and so the chances were almost zero that I would be able to get a Metacard during public sale.

During the Metacard minting event, with so much hype and website traffic, OpenSea CRASHED which made it impossible to purchase on secondary there.

At this point, the only way to get a Metacard was to venture into the web3 alternative exchanges – basically the real wild wild west of the internet, where you really have to watch out to protect yourself from getting scammed or having your assets stolen.

The risk of doing this is that you could easily end up buying a fraudulent NFT if you don’t verify that the smart contract and addresses are legit. After digging into Etherscan block explorers, downloading CSV files, and matching addresses, I made sure that I wasn’t about to pay for something fake.

I found a legit Metacard on secondary BEFORE the public sale started and successfully paid for and transferred it to my wallet.

With Full Send gyms on the horizon and new hilarious videos dropping every week, I couldn’t be more stoked for the future of Metacard community.

If you haven’t seen @KyleForgeard and the Nelk Boys’ YouTube videos, look them up immediately. Pranks and comedy is valuable for everyone, because we all need to laugh.

I’m still diamond-handing all of these to the moon.

Did I spend too much money on NFTs, or is this simply a healthy diversification of funds into a risky yet potentially exponential asset class?

You can analyze my spending history table below for yourself.

I’d also be curious to hear how you think NFTs will play a role in peoples’ lives over the next 3-5 years. Share a comment at the bottom and let me know what you thought.

Spending History Table (via estimates)

How to Bridge, Swap and Wrap Crypto on Ethereum and Polygon Networks

Overview of Bridging, Swapping, and Wrapping tokens on Ethereum Mainnet and Polygon Mainnet

After familiarizing myself with transacting in ETH using the Metamask wallet, I wanted to try a few things on Polygon.

Unfortunately, I made few mistakes and almost lost $375 worth of Ethereum.

Not a life-changing amount of money, but still would have been a bummer to lose funds.

Thankfully, I was able to locate all of the funds after doing my due diligence to understand how the Ethereum-to-Polygon network transactions work.

I’ll share what I learned – but first, the TLDR:

TLDR: Wrapping and Swapping happen between tokens on the same blockchain network. Bridging means you are switching your funds from one blockchain to another.

etherescan transactions
my transactions in question, via etherscan

Swapping ETH to MATIC

When you want to transfer ETH into other tokens, you use a process called “swapping”. During Swapping, your funds stay on Ethereum Mainnet but they are transferred to a different token.

Uniswap is a popular tool that allows you to transfer ETH to another token on the Ethereum Mainnet Network.

When you want to swap a token from ETH to something like Polygon / Matic, you’re going to end up with the MATIC token on the Ethereum Mainnet network after paying your gas fees.

Initially, however, the token might not show up in your wallet (this is what happened to me). I thought I lost my tokens because I simply didn’t see them there, and mistakenly thought my funds were lost completely.

In order to fix this, you have to click “Import Tokens” in your wallet. Search for MATIC, and select the one that says “Matic Network Token (MATIC)”.

import tokens on matic

You should then see the value of the Matic that you swapped displaying in your wallet.

Wrapping ETH to WETH:

OpenSea gives users the two options:

  1. Bridge Ethereum to Polygon
  2. Wrap Ethereum to WETH
ethereum and polygon options to bridge or wrap on opensea

Bridging processes are fundamentally different – more on that in the next section.

Wrapping means you are converting ETH to WETH on the Ethereum Mainnet network. You are not switching blockchains.

When you select “Wrap” and input the amounts, you will end up with WETH on Ethereum Mainnet. It should auto-display in your wallet without you having to do anything. Pretty easy.

Bridging ETH to Polygon

Bridging ETH to Polygon means you are moving funds from one blockchain network to another (off of Ethereum Mainnet and onto Polygon Mainnet).

This is fundamentally different than Wrapping and Swapping because you are literally changing blockchains.

When you bridge, you also end up swapping or wrapping tokens on the back end. ETH does not exist on the Polygon Mainnet blockchain – only WETH (wrapped Ethereum).

What does exist on Polygon Mainnet is WETH. When you select “Bridge to Polygon”, you end up with WETH bridged to Polygon Mainnet.

When you Bridge, because your funds are moved off of the Ethereum Mainnet blockchain, they might not show up in your wallet.

This is where I mistakenly thought I lost my funds the second time!

To fix this, you need to add the Polygon Mainnet network to your wallet.

Using a tool like Chainlist makes it easier. Go to the website, connect wallet, search for Polygon Mainnet, and click “Add To Metamask”.

Once its added, switching between Ethereum Mainnet and Polygon Mainnet is possible.

ethereum mainnet and polygon mainnet

When you click Polygon Mainnet, you should see your bridged funds displaying in WETH – in my case 0.055 worth, below.

Once you bridge to another blockchain, you can swap and wrap different tokens on Polygon Mainnet just like you can on Ethereum Mainnet. Uniswap enables this on the Polygon blockchain too.

On OpenSea, you can transact with WETH on Polygon, but not with MATIC.

Just don’t forget to check your wallet and make sure you’re on the right network!

matic and weth balance on polygon mainnet
Notice that the balance of MATIC on Polygon is 0 – its all in WETH.

What do to if WETH is not showing up on your wallet:

If you switch the the Polygon Network after depositing WETH into your Polygon wallet, sometimes the tokens are hidden, and won’t initially show up.

This can also happen if you disconnect your Metamask wallet from your browser and then re-connect.

But Don’t worry! Your funds are still there, they’re just hidden.

To fix this, simply click Assets, then click “Import Token”, and paste the WETH token address into the “Token Contract Address”.

import WETH token on Polygon Mainnet

Don’t forget to double check and verify that you are using the correct token contract address. Refer to Polygonscan if in doubt, or the official Polygon Docs. We’re going to be using WETH-POS.

When you paste the Token Contract Address in, it should auto-populate the Token Symbol (WETH) as well as Token Decimal, 18.

Click Add Custom Token, and it should work!

Moment of Zen:

Crypto is risky. Blockchain is the wild wild west of the internet – there’s not really anywhere to go for help if you make a mistake.

The beauty of owning your private keys means that you have control over your funds.

The downside is that if you end up losing those funds, there’s really no one to blame but yourself. If I lost my funds, it would have been my own fault, and there’s not a bank to help recover anything.

In hind-sight, the funds were never really at risk of being gone forever, I simply didn’t know how bridging and swapping worked.

I should have educated myself because a lot of blockchain processes are counter-intuitive.

Crypto finance is different than the traditional banking that we’re all used to.

There are prerequisites and important steps to be taken to ensure the protocols line up and that the transactions go through smoothly.

Lesson learned: next time I try something new or experimental in crypto, I’m going to watch a few videos, read the documentation, and educate myself BEFOREHAND.

Making mistakes is part of the crypto learning experience. Fuidance of friends from time to time has certainly helped, but there will always be some trial and error while experimenting in the world of crypto.

Buying and Selling NFT Artwork made by Artificial Intelligence

One of the most popular NFT categories in 2022 is artificial intelligence generated artwork.

For a small amount of of an Ethereum, you can purchase artwork that was created by combining two of the most exciting emerging technologies, both blockchain and artificial intelligence.

In order to buy and sell these unique AI-generated NFT pieces, you’ll first need to setup a crypto wallet and link it to the OpenSea website.

Among the NFT projects I’ve browsed through, AI-generated Project Argo is one collection that stood out.

ai generated nft artwork
by Project Argo – titled Fading

What’s interesting about Project Argo is that the artist has been able to use AI to develop artwork that seems to embody characters or entities within each piece.

As seen in Fading above, the NFT appears (to me at least) to feature a face.

Artworks become much more interesting when they appear to feature individual characters and facial expressions.

All types of art – whether painting or literature or music – seems to have a positive or negative connotation.

Some artists create more uplifting artwork (Norman Rockwell or Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel) while others create artwork that is mischievous or scandalous work, and other artists create powerfully dark and emotional works.

What emotional sentiment do AI-generated NFTs evoke?

Looking through the list of images made by AI, I can’t help but wonder about the baseline emotion evoked by artificial intelligence.

What connotation and sentiment does the neural network create when generating these graphics?

As the lay observer, every photo seems to evoke the same balance of emotion, somewhere between darkness and excitement.

If we had a way to measure emotional sentiment, where might each image fit on a scale that measure how optimistic or pessimistic each image looks?

To me, it feels as though each image is quite close to neutral.

Can art created by artificial intelligence create emotions?

The surprising thing is that, looking through all of these photos on Project Argo, I get the sense that each piece of artwork is depicting entities that are saying and feeling very similar representative emotions.

And yet its difficult to put it into words.

Its like trying to explain what is experienced under the influence of psychedelics – often impossible to do so in worldly terms.

The resemblance to faces in the photos are approximately accurate. Although there is no true face, the outline of eyes, nose, mouth, etc. evoke a baseline facial expression that a person might have when their face is at rest.

ai generated nft artwork via opensea
Zen by Project Argo

The entities depicted in these photos all have the same, neutral facial expression. Not a single smile, eyebrow raise, or wink. They all have the same, neutral look – one that you cannot quite figure out.

Yet the images don’t feel expressionless or emotionless.

They feel as if they are showing life at work. Life doing what life does – here to experience our world for the sake of its own existence.

Except that these entities are in a different place. They don’t exist in our world, but in an unknown realm – completely generated by AI.

What can humans learn from artificial intelligence by viewing its NFT artwork?

Each piece has a that resembles some sort of techno-futuristic Armageddon. “The last island party” and “robot revolution” for example.

Of the list, Dreamy City and Penguin one stood out. They’re all worth a look.

  • When artificial intelligence designs an image for humans to look at, what is it trying to say to us?
  • As artificial intelligence looks back at us in society, could the message be “you can do better”?

Perhaps we can gather a sense for what AI feels, by looking at the artwork it creates, and by interpreting the types of creations that arise.

How to buy AI-Generated NFT Artwork:

In order to get involved and actually own a few NFTs, you’re going to need a crypto wallet.

In the mean-time, get your crypto wallet setup and learn as much about blockchain as possible. Check out this Blockchain Simplified Explainer.