Tales from 2050: A look into a world built on NFTs

Tales from 2050: A look into a world built on NFTs

“You will own nothing and you will be happy,” — this sentiment was at the core of a declaration issued more than 30 years ago in 2016 by the leaders of the World Economic Forum. It sounded dystopian, like something taken from a book by Aldous Huxley or George Orwell. It was probably among the most insidious ideas I'd ever heard.

Somehow, I remembered that idea today in 2050 when selling my racing drone. I guess I was reminded of the merits of true, private ownership. It was a beautiful two-seater, capable of going from 0 to 100 km/h in two seconds — which wasn't that bad for an electric vehicle, especially considering it was built in the previous decade.

Our top trading bots

It took about an hour to find a buyer on a surprisingly niche marketplace that's built on top of Efinity, a blockchain network my company created during the early days of nonfungible tokens (NFTs). Even after all these years, the network is still alive and kicking, having seen countless upgrades enabled by its future-proof design. The transaction was done pretty simply through a smart contract. I checked my cryptocurrency balance to confirm payment and watched my drone drive itself to its new owner half a world away. While the range on a single charge wasn't great on those vintage models, there were enough charging stations for it along the way.

Through our transaction, the buyer was now in the possession of a powerful nonfungible token which gave her both legal, tangible and immutable ownership over the drone. Without that NFT in her wallet, the racing drone would otherwise be a useless hunk of scrap metal. There were no intermediaries and no unnecessary paperwork. Just a simple efficient transaction between two drone racing enthusiasts living on different continents.

These days, NFTs are everywhere and everything.

From small, everyday appliances like my coffee maker and orbital nanosat, to smart apartments, there are at least a dozen near-Earth space rocks being traded as fractionalized NFTs, fueling the growth of the asteroid mining industry. And that's just tokenized real-life assets — don't even get me started on the stuff that exists only in the digital domain.

Combining the virtual and the real, the Metaverse is an amazing yet strange labyrinth of creativity and economic activity that not only helped lift hundreds of millions out of poverty but also played a critical role in funding some of mankind's greatest engineering projects.

Related: Sci-fi or blockchain reality? The ‘Ready Player One’ OASIS can be built

Today’s drone sale made me pause to think just how different the concept of ownership is today. The advent of unbound true ownership of both physical and digital assets opened up amazing possibilities for us, both as individuals and as a civilization. So we did what humans do best when given the right opportunity and resources: We prospered.

It's a funny thing, blockchain and NFTs have even become the key to trade between planets, as Mars is now home to tens of thousands of adventurous colonists, hosting everyone from structural engineers to swarm robotics experts. Mars has its own ecosystem of decentralized networks, separated from Earth-based blockchains by a pesky light-speed delay. Though the two network clusters are highly asynchronous, their communication protocols allow Martians and Earthlings to easily trade with each other.

Related: The convergence between Tesla, SpaceX, renewable energy and Bitcoin mining

I bought an NFT giving me partial yet significant ownership of a Martian water production facility, and I have multiple friends who instructed their AI assistants to automatically invest in well-performing companies on the Red Planet. A game made by a Martian developer went viral on Earth a few weeks ago and is on its way to becoming the next Lost Relics.

To most kids now, these concepts aren't at all magnificent — to them, it's normal and mundane.

I like to think about how blockchains will evolve in the next century, with complex interactions between planets and space habitats that are separated by a vast void, yet connected economically, socially, culturally and perhaps even politically through intricate radio waves sending blockchain data back and forth.

To think this all started over three decades ago… We've come a long way since those early days. Now, I think it's time for me to buy an NFT. I've been eyeing up a particular custom racing model for weeks now, and its holographic interface looks sick.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Maxim Blagov is co-founder and CEO of Enjin, an ecosystem of blockchain software products that help to develop, trade, monetize and market with NFTs. He has over 20 years of experience in creative direction, project management, and UX/UI design, with expertise in concept and strategy development for large interactive and blockchain applications.
Keep reading with Cointelegraph
Robinhood crypto wallet testing is live: 1,000 users can now withdraw
Online retail investing platform Robinhood has released its long awaited crypto wallet for beta testing which will finally enable users to withdraw crypto...
Bitcoin tumbles below $47K wiping out October gains — Bear market begins?
Bitcoin (BTC) has suddenly fallen below $47,000 on Dec. 4, losing nearly 20% in the past 24 hours. This makes this the biggest one-day drop since May 15,...
Cardano Falls 11% In Selloff
Investing.com - Cardano was trading at $1.5222 by 07:50 (12:50 GMT) on the Investing.com Index on Friday, down 11.43% on the day. It was the largest one-day...
FTX US sees daily volume, users surge in Q3
United States crypto exchange FTX US registered a large uptick in trading volumes and investor activity during the third quarter, underscoring heightened...
SEC chair doubles down, tells crypto firms 'come in and talk to us'
Gary Gensler, chair of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, is once again urging crypto projects with securities to register with the regulatory...
Not dead yet: Bitcoin network logs 700,000th block as adoption grows
Bitcoin (BTC) miners officially produced their 700,000th block on Sept. 11, marking a major milestone for a network whose detractors claim it has died 428...
Kaspersky ranks cryptojackers among top malware threats in Africa
Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky has detected more than 1,500 fraudulent entities targeting potential crypto investors and miners just in the first...
Jordan Peterson wraps his divisive giga-brain around Bitcoin
Controversial Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson appears to have turned onto Bitcoin in the latest episode of his podcast. On Aug. 10 Peterson published...
Biconomy’s Hyphen enables low-cost transfers between Ethereum and Polychain
Multichain infrastructure network Biconomy has formally launched its Hyphen mainnet, setting the stage for instant low-cost token transfers across blockchains...
Fidelity to hire more crypto hands amid growing institutional interest
Fidelity Digital, the crypto arm of the global asset management giant Fidelity Investments Inc., will reportedly hire more people for its expanding cryptocurrency...
Bitcoin electricity consumption falls to November 2020 levels: Data
Bitcoin’s total estimated annual electricity consumption has plummeted nearly 60%, falling from the all-time peak above 143 terawatt-hours (TWh) in May...
Cardano Falls 23% In Bearish Trade
Investing.com - Cardano was trading at $1.455900 by 21:54 (01:54 GMT) on the Investing.com Index on Thursday, down 22.94% on the day. It was the largest...
Bitcoin clips $58K as Dogecoin stalls and adoption news fuels bulls
Bitcoin (BTC) touched $58,000 on Thursday as the latest phase of its comeback seemed to come at the expense of altcoins.BTC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Bitstamp)....
Record $600M BNB burn suggests Binance made $750M in profit in Q1
Binance Coin (BNB) saw its 15th burn to date on Friday. According to on-chain data, Binance burned nearly $600 million worth of BNB tokens. Historically,...
A Coder Becomes Crypto-Millionaire, Buys $200,000-worth Lamborghini for Bitcoin
There have already been told lots of stories about successful purchases of real estate for bitcoin in the US, but what about luxurious cars like Lamborghini?...