March 28, 2022

What is Flow Blockchain and what are NFTs?

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What is Flow Blockchain?

โ€Flow is a fast, decentralized, and developer-friendly layer-1 blockchain. It was created by a company called Dapper Labs, the team behind CryptoKitties, to solve problems they had scaling CryptoKitties on the Ethereum network.

Flow differs from other blockchains (like Ethereum, Solana, Bitcoin, Cardano, DOGE & more) because it was explicitly designed to support games and consumer applications on day one, with the throughput necessary to scale to millions of active users.

Many high profile IPs have built applications on top of Flow across sport and entertainment including the NBA, UFC, La Liga and NFL, as well as Warner and Universal music group.

Being a layer-1 blockchain, Flow is a smart contract platform. This means developers can build NFTs, decentralised finance applications, games, DAOs and Cryptocurrencies (tokens)ย on top of Flow Blockchain.

At date of publishing this article, NFTs are the first and most-common application built on top of Flow Blockchain, however we are starting to see DAOs (Emerald City, Blocto), decentralised finance (Flowty, Mantle Finance, Increment Fi), games (Chainmonsters, Joyride)ย and tokens ($BLT, $STARLY, $MY)ย launch too.

$FLOW is the native currency (cryptocurrency) for the Flow network, the exclusive token for staking, governance, payment of transaction fees, and the principal reserve asset on the network.

Extra Reading: โ€

Flow: The Normie Blockchainโ€

โ€Intro to Flow with Dapper Labs' CEO Roham Gharegozlou

โ€Flow - Fast, Scalable, Reliable Blockchain for Next Billion Users

What are NFTs?

NFT stands for Non-fungible token. To understand what this means, let's break it down into the two words:

1 - Non-fungible: A non-fungible asset is unique and non-interchangeable i.e. a beautiful house, a rare piece of art like the Mona Lisa or a very rare Pokemon card. This contrasts to a fungible asset like cash whereby a $10 note is interchangeable and non-unique in the sense that a $10 note is always worth $10 regardless of who owns it or the condition it is in.

2 - Token: A token is a form of virtual currency that exists on a blockchain.

Combining the two means that NFTs are like a 1 of 1 cryptocurrency, or cryptocurrency representing an art piece instead of currency.

An NFT can represent any type of digital asset. For example, artwork, an mp3 file, a video clip, or virtual land. Crucially, the NFT isnโ€™t actually the piece of artwork itself; itโ€™s a unique, on-chain token (piece of code on a blockchain) that represents the ownership of the digital asset.

What's a Flow Blockchain NFT?

NFTs can be built on top of most smart contract supporting layer-1 blockchains.

i.e. There are Solana NFTs on the Solana blockchain, Ethereum NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain, Avalanche NFTs on the Avalanche blockchain, WAX NFTs on the WAX blockchain and Flow NFTs on the Flow Blockchain.

As such, a Flow Blockchain NFT is simply an NFT that exists on the Flow Blockchain.

Flow Blockchain NFTs have numerous advantages:

  • They are environmentally friendly. Flow NFTs (NFTs built on top of Flow Blockchain) have been found by Deloitte Canada to require less energy to create than an Instagram post. In fact, 12.5 FLOW NFTs can be minted for each Google search. This is due to Flow's Proof of Stake consensus mechanism and unique multi-node architecture.
  • Extremely low fees to buy/ sell and interact with. This is unlike NFTs on other blockchains which can involve expensive fees.
  • They are less likely to be scams/ rug-pulls. At the moment the Flow Blockchain team reviews all smart contracts before they get published on the Flow Blockchain Mainnet. Due to this review process, you could view Flow NFTs as being less likely to be scams.
  • They have a good user experience and design. Most Flow Blockchain NFTs are explicitly built with mainstream consumers ("normies") in mind.
  • They can't be sent to your wallet unless you give permission to receive it. This means you won't receive unwanted NFTs in you wallet.

Extra Reading:

โ€Life is Non-fungible: The Evolution of Ownership, Assets, and Us
Demystifying NFTs
Why NFTs are suddenly selling for millions of dollars

How does Flowverse fit into this?

Flowverse can be viewed as the front-page of Flow Blockchain i.e. a central hub you can go to find everything happening in the Flow Blockchain ecosystem.

We're a directory that aggregates all information about projects, NFT collections, DAOs, defi applications, games and more built on Flow Blockchain. We curate qualitative information (upcoming NFT drops, news, investors, AMAs with founders, other research reports) and quantitative information (project rankings).

Flowverse was built by the Flow community for the Flow community. We also partner with Flow projects for airdrops and giveaways, plus have a jobs board to help them hire the best web3 talent.