Ordinals inscriptions, viewed as a kind of Bitcoin-native NFTs, are picking up steam among some Bitcoin circles, even though the procedures to issue them are far from user-friendly. The protocol, which was unveiled in January, has already served to bring more than 7,000 inscriptions directly to the Bitcoin chain, with some collections already present.
Ordinals Pick Up Steam; More Than 7,000 Inscriptions Issued
Ordinals, the protocol that allows each bitcoin satoshi to be identified with a non-fungible number, is gaining popularity among certain circles, even when the procedures to include an element in the Bitcoin blockchain (an “inscription“) is still very far from user-friendly, as each user must run a full Bitcoin node to make an inscription.
The protocol, which rose to prominence due to a feature present in the Taproot update allowing the size of a transaction to be as big as the size of a Bitcoin block, already has served to bring more than 7,000 inscriptions to the bitcoin blockchain as of 12:00 p.m. ET on Feb. 6.
While inscriptions can contain various content, determined by a file type that describes the object inside the inscription, most are images, which will be conserved forever as part of the blockchain. However, this feature has spurred controversy, with some criticizing the effects that this could have on the size of the Bitcoin blockchain in the future, limiting its financial use case.
However, Casey Rodarmord, creator of Ordinals, has declared that the idea behind this protocol is to bring fun and interest to Bitcoin again.
Taproot Wizards and More Collections
Among the more recognizable inscriptions collections being issued is Taproot Wizards, promoted by crypto influencers Udi Wertheimer and Eric Wall. The first Taproot Wizard was issued on top of the biggest block ever mined in the Bitcoin blockchain. It featured an image of the magic internet money meme wizard introduced by Mavensbot, which was used as a Reddit ad in the Bitcoin subreddit back in 2013.
There are already six different inscriptions with art derived from the aforementioned meme. Ordinal Rocks, another collection that claims to be the first one on Ordinals, has 100 images of rocks serialized and present on the bitcoin blockchain. Another collection, called Ordinal Punks, which mimics the Ethereum-based Cryptopunks, also claims to have 100 inscriptions among the first 650 inscriptions on the bitcoin blockchain.
The dynamics of establishing a market for commercializing and monetizing these inscriptions are still a work in progress, as there is currently no marketplace. However, there have been reports of sales in secondary markets, with some inscriptions being sold for almost one bitcoin, but there is currently no way of corroborating if these sales are actually real.
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Sergio is a cryptocurrency journalist based in Venezuela. He describes himself as late to the game, entering the cryptosphere when the price rise happened during December 2017. Having a computer engineering background, living in Venezuela, and being impacted by the cryptocurrency boom at a social level, he offers a different point of view about crypto success and how it helps the unbanked and underserved.
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