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Crypto Through Immersion - [ShipIt.io Podcast]

What we're trying to do is break down our part one and two, how you can immerse yourself in this world to learn it the fastest and come to appreciate it. Let's talk about “do you have to care about the project or not?”

Brandon Aaskov: Hi, I'm Brandon Aaskov. And this is another episode of Ship It with me. Today our guest is Dave Merwin, who does exactly what I do at DEPT®. We've been running a bunch of crypto projects and trying to get people to understand this world and to understand what this blockchain space and technologies have to offer.

Dave Merwin: I'm David Merwin, as Brandon said, and I've been an artist/creator/developer for the past 20 years. I'm super stoked about the stuff that we're working on because I feel like it's providing some unique opportunities and some new stuff to explore.

These days the internet feels like how it did in 1992 like anything was possible.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah. I definitely think it's a little alienating to some people too, because it's a new space, and looking at it from the outside in can seem crazy and hectic, and I think it could also seem overwhelming and confusing.

There's a lot to crack into here, but I think what we're going to try to do today is break down our parts one and two, how you can immerse yourself in this world to learn it the fastest and come to appreciate it. So yeah, let's dig into this right away. Let's talk about “do you have to care about the project or not?”

“Should I just go buy a crypto punk?” I can't afford it. “How do I define what's going to be a good NFT or am I just riding the hype train? What am I doing here?”

Dave Merwin: The thing that I love the most about this is being curious about these things. “Do you have to actually care about the project?

Do you have to care about what you're getting involved in? Do you have to understand it?” I think if you are curious that's enough to get started. That curiosity, the ability to explore and dream about what could be possible is the gateway drug to all of this, right? Like how can I figure that?

What this is supposed to do and how do I want to be involved.

Brandon Aaskov: For me, I would say that it's really easy to take cracks at it until it's important to you. I did that myself, especially early on when I was like, I don't get this. And then I realized one day that I had been buying digital packs of magic, the gathering cards for playing that game digitally.

And I was like, man, I'd love to have an actual representation of this ownership instead of this black box that I'm buying right now. And then it hit me. And so that was my early days of realizing how I could have value for something that I already enjoy. And the same thing is true for NBA top shot, NFL, all these sports, there's a lot of things behind it.

And I think that, as soon as it taps into your fandom, it really shows. I was recently telling Dave this story. There's someone we work with who said  “I don't really see what the big deal is with NFTs”. then Flo came out with their new, “NFL all day”.

And he missed the first drop and he was really upset about it. Like he was really bummed that he couldn't get that NFT and he had to wait till the next drop was coming around. So it's very easy to hate on it until all of a sudden it makes sense.

Dave Merwin: I think what was exciting for me about this whole space, from the beginning as an artist and where I fell out of love with the internet, was probably the [00:03:00] moment when digital cameras came out and everyone started becoming a photographer.

The ability now to actually, even though there are so many questions out there, there's so much that's not figured out, but the idea that unique ownership can become a thing again and that as an artist and a creator. Exert some sort of rights over your IP in a way that's meaningful. If you have less than a hundred thousand followers, it definitely feels like this is the opportunity.

To do some really interesting things.

Brandon Aaskov: Again that's a good point and a decent segue to mention. I like classifying it this way for people, especially if they're new to it. There's really two categories of NFTs that you'll see. One is on the art and collectible side. We had people who made a  $69 million piece of art.

You can think of them as modern-day Banksy in the NFC realm. And then you have the collectible side. The collectibles would be board API club or magic, gathering cards like there's the utility side. Now board apps also offer this VIP membership that gives you exclusive access to certain things, a chance to stand in line early for certain things.

So that's one example of that. It could be discounts, whatever there's always a utility type. Today, we're seeing those two things overlap in a big way. I think we'll still see utility NFTs have some kind of arch individual tied to them, but “will it have to be unique every time?” Probably not on the art side.

On the other hand, we'll definitely see maybe one NFT represent this particular digital piece of art. Now it's interesting. In the regular physical art world. I don't know if you remember that banana duct tape to the wall that's called the “Comedian”.  That I think has four separate licenses that people or any museum has the right to display that banana and replace the banana as needed for the art display.

So right there, you can think of that as like four separate certificates that show that as the real installation. Because I could duct tape a banana to my wall, but it doesn't mean that I have the right to “show off that art installation”. I think that we'll see the art side differentiate itself from the utility side of things.

But right now the collectible side of things is huge. It's a new version of collectibles with new baseball cards. I don't want to call them beanie babies, but some of them have that. And I think it's a good segue to saying, I think that there are a lot of signs that point to most of these NFTs going to zero Massari research. It is similar to the Forrester research. Crypto land recently put out a report for their crypto thesis for 2022.

And they have a pretty clear sentence in their saying that most entities are going to go to zero today, but the technology there is very sound and it'll become an asset class, on its own that will be here for a long time to come.

Dave Merwin: Yeah, I think to pick up on what you're talking about with the collectibles, one of my big pushbacks, at least at NFTs in the beginning, was  “I don't care about PFPs, I don't want to coordinate.”

Brandon Aaskov: I just answered a profile picture of the F is the F and profile, I guess that's like the Twitter avatar thing.

Dave Merwin: Exactly, But the point “I don't care about that stuff and that's okay” does not represent the entire body trying to equate the idea that NFTs as art. It is to what you see when you see a board.

It is as if Ape is saying a 1955 Plymouth is representative of all transportation. It just doesn't make any sense. And that's not how things work and that's not what things actually are. If you look at it and go, most of this is crap to you. It might be, and to massage the point, it may go to zero, but that's not the point.

The point is that there are things in there that are interesting to various different people and with four and a half billion people on there, there's going to be a lot of variety.

Brandon Aaskov: I've been trying to liken it to people. When cars were first invented, we went from horses to cars.

That was a big change. It wasn't that it was more similar to the industrial revolution where we had factory lines, all of a sudden now we have that stuff available to everybody. It expands the scope of what's possible in a massive way that I don't think people see like I'm a person that is freaked out about 3D printers.

Everything will be 3D printed in the future. You'll be printing out kidneys on your desktop. Maybe in time, this tech here changed a lot of things in a short period of time. Let's say you can't find a product that you like. Maybe I don't care about the NBA or the NFL or “sports ball” as people like to call it.

How do I get involved with something I can look forward to?

Dave Merwin: I would argue again, it goes back to your own curiosities. So first of all, no one is going to hold your hand as your friends will, your buddies will, but the internet and the internet community are not going to hold your hand in this.

So if you're curious about photography, let's say black and white photography, or let's get real specific, like black and white seascape photography. If you Googled black and white seascape photography and FTS, you're going to find a collection. You may not like it. And maybe you want to contribute to it.

Maybe you want to participate as an artist, but the idea of going to an NFT marketplace and realizing your curiosities being fulfilled is not necessarily going to happen. The marketplace and your curiosity are diametrically opposed. When I'm looking for projects to get involved in, in order to find out more about, I really start with Google and [00:08:00] the topic I'm interested in. For instance, for me, I really love generative art, and I love the idea.

Dave Merwin: Yeah. So, you read a piece of code. It takes in some variables and it generates R and it's both ends kind of thing. You're cooperating. The machines cooperate with you. We could go into this for hours, but the idea of, I want to go see that stuff.

It's going to be an art block. That IO is devoted to generative art, and they actually are doing a really cool project the way they're doing that. So anyway, I would suggest. Looking in places that you don't like and using that as the basis to make your decision on instead, go follow your curiosities and go look for where those projects are being represented.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah, that's well said. And I should also point out that not all NFTs do have art tied to them. Without going down this other rabbit hole and we'll avoid this today, I'll mention something, a recent product that was announced. It was a big deal. If you pay attention to this space, it was called “LinksDao”, where essentially you're, pre-buying a membership to a golf course that doesn't exist yet.

By all these memberships, the community has contributed to this coffer of money that will be used to go by the golf course where they'll all have this exclusive membership to it. So that is a version of an NFT that is very different from what we see today. So maybe that speaks to you if you're a golfer, maybe that was just like, "Hey, I get it now." Maybe that was the moment. It doesn't always have to be.

Dave Merwin: Yeah, I feel like you just opened the door in the hallway, in the matrix. And then all the green light just like blasts out behind it.

Brandon Aaskov: We're trying our best to dear listeners to knock it down as many rabbit holes as we typically go down.

Let's talk about wallets

Brandon Aaskov: I don't know if you've ever been in a room with crypto people. I know it can be very alienating, but it's because they go so deep down rabbit holes and say a lot. We'll try our best, not to get too deep into the lingo. So let's go right into lingo. Let's talk about wallets. I guess I'll keep a high level, is that a wallet is effectively served up typically through some kind of mobile app or browser extension, but what it is, you can think of it like an email address.

It's a way to reach you and you can send and receive things from, and people can't log into it, but it's just a way for you to log into. And this new web three landscape, that's a really high-level overview. I don't know how you feel about that.

Dave Merwin: And I think that's fantastic. And it leads to the description that wallets, hopefully, this is the only time I say web three in this entire, but drops.

So typically if you could have Facebook or Instagram, these different services, you have to log into their system and you have to authenticate yourself against their database with a wallet, you log into your wallet, and then you can take that wallet and go to other places. And your credentials go with you.

The other service is not supposed to know anything about who you are as an individual outside of your address. So the idea is I can take this information about myself and go to all these different places like open C and R blocks.io or whatever. Like I can move my information around with me interacting with them, but they don't get to know who I am.

So I get to keep my information private

Brandon Aaskov:  That's the goal. It's funny. I think that people tend to focus on privacy, but I think that there's actually a much more community-involved with this new space, especially now, again like early web days, everyone's excited. There's a lot of this swirl around the community that I think we'll actually end up seeing.

I'll use a good example of Steve Aoki got in early with NFTs. He's got three board apes. He's got three mutant apes. We've already mentioned some mute names. A few times they are popular NFTs. I'll leave it at that. They were expensive. Celebrities love them. Steve Aoki has a vault open.

And I thought that just goes to show that people are willing to tie their wallet address to their showcase. That just shows what they've done to show what they've held. And while that does expose you to all of the transactions that have ever come in and, or out of that wallet, I think that people are generally okay with that.

We've gone from where my parents and my grandparents would default to everything, to what I do online is private. Unless I specify that. Our generation was everything I do online is public, unless I specify otherwise. And this new generation is more everything's public. Anyway, I might as well just shout it from the rooftops and be really careful about what I do online, because it's gonna be.

Dave Merwin: And for those of you who might be freaking out when you hear that you have an option. So it, and we can go into the details of this later, but you can have a public and a private wallet.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah, it's true. We've simplified what a wallet is on the surface. It does get very deep and what you can do with them at a high level. It's “Hey, now everyone can be their own”.

But, with being your own bank comes some responsibility too, in terms of how you handle the thing. It comes with a lot of risks. So it's a good segue into talking about a little bit of lingo. Let's stick with us here. Versus non-custodial wallets, custodial wallet, being something where someone holds that wallet on behalf of you.

It's very similar to what happens today. When you log into something they're holding that profile on behalf of you in this case, your money, your assets, your NFTs could be tied to that wallet. So you have to trust the institution. That's holding it on behalf of you. There's a saying in crypto that says not your keys, not your wallet.

And that is definitely true here where you might want that responsibility. It comes with some risk too, right? Own your own wallet and move those things into your own wallet. You have to be [00:13:00] responsible enough to do it properly, and you do run the risk of doing it improperly. And if you think that's scary, then hopefully the institution that is holding it on behalf of you is trustworthy and that you trust them.

And that's okay because custodial wallets are okay. Hate on them or anything like that. But those are really the two differences, that this while we've been describing so far, would be considered a noncustodial wallet. You have to own the keys. And actually let's talk about that. What are keys?

What are keys?

So when we say, I guess we should call it by what the lingo is in the world right now. I've heard two F two terms at seed phrase or mnemonic being that word that starts like Johnny mnemonic, starring Kianu Reeves from the early nineties. M N E M O N I C a. Yeah, a seed phrase essentially, instead of a password it's 24, 25, 26 different words that are in a specific order and you don't pick them.

They are generated for you. And then you'll see when you create a wall, it's write these down, put them somewhere safe. Don't take a picture of it. Don't write it on a post. If you lose this, you lose [00:14:00] access to this thing forever. And that is true. I can't stress that enough. We're going to scare some people. So what's a good solution there for people who. I don't know. I just remember I use one password for everything I'm supposed to remember. 25 words. What do people do about that?

Dave Merwin:  I think it's a great question. I think one of the things that you should not do is take a picture of it with your phone. Don't put that it's backing up and sinking to Google drive or Google photos or Apple or whatever.

So what I do personally, I'm going to share my practice. I went to my local hardware store. I put the safe in a closet. It's a fireproof safe. And when I create a phrase, I write it down on a piece of paper, and I label what it is. And then I put that thing in a safe, don't take pictures of it. I don't do any of those things.

And I know it sounds like a lot of work, but it's definitely like the first time. And this happens all to me as an adult with ADHD. I know that this is Evan's story. So I have no problem writing things down because the first time you forget it and notice you have $150 in that wallet.

And you forget, like it's gone. [00:15:00] I'm pretty diligent about writing it down, putting it in the safe and closing the safe. And then if I forget the combination to the safe, at least then I can bust it open with a sledgehammer or something.

Brandon Aaskov: You'll figure out how to get into the safe somehow again, like going back to you had that responsibility.

You have to make sure that you can protect yourself from bad actors. And that means in a lot of cases, using some sort of physical non-connected non-digital means of storing your password, a company called ledger, which makes hardware, wallets, called storage wallets, which we can get into, but they also make other products which are called “crypto steel” and “bill photo”.

And basically they're versions where you can store that 25 seed phrase, whatever it is and keep it in something that is fireproof itself, is crushproof, and withstand an amazing amount of force. So there are basically different ways to do this, but the proper way to do it is offline.

Whether it be physical, whatever. And as Dave mentioned, he put it in a fireproof safe. You want to protect it from the elements and God forbid, there should be some accident at your home. We have insurance [00:16:00] for that kind of thing, but they won't cover your crypto wallet again. If all you have is a password manager and you trust it, that's an option.

It's not my favorite option, but it's an option. Just don't write it down on a post-it or take a picture of a police officer.

Dave Merwin: Yeah, the picture is the worst. Probably the worst thing you could do, unless it's like a Polaroid.

Brandon Aaskov:  Maybe I can see that being okay. That's probably like the one, good use of Polaroids.

Now it is.

Dave Merwin: So let's talk about, f you pull the right, if you're listening, we can help you design your app and get that started for you.

Brandon Aaskov: Exactly. So MetaMask. Popular term around wallet, terminology, and people think that's the blockchain thing I do now MetaMask and I guess it's worth pointing out that MetaMask is built on top of the Ethereum blockchain.

It does work-based blockchains, which I won't go down that rabbit hole either. There are other things that work with, besides the Ethereum, which has polygon, you can also connect to test networks and do a bunch of advanced things with it. In fact, it's a little overwhelming because of that for first timers.

And on top of that, Ethereum, I don't know if you know this or not, but Ethereum is known for having very high transaction fees right [00:17:00] now. So I think that for the sake of this discussion, we'll just not talk about MetaMask. Let's talk about maybe what's a great user-friendly wallet.

What's a great user-friendly wallet

User-friendly blockchain, where the transaction fees are low there. People can get involved.

Dave Merwin: I actually have a bunch of wallets that I don't even use. And the reason is I went through and explore. What the user experience was like for the wallets. Does it make sense to me? Do, does it give me the control that I want?

That kind of stuff. So for me, it's, the rules of thumb are one. So I get pissed when I open it. Like when I open it, is it confusing? Do I have to hunt and pack to try to find the information like it needs to just make sense for what I'm trying to do? So the ones that I found on Solano Phantom is a really great wallet to me.

It's super easy on algo. It's my algo. So then, my algo browser extension, while if you're a developer, that's really fun.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah.

Dave Merwin:  There's a lot you can do, but in both of those instances though, Mel, my algo, the UI is a little rough, but the [00:18:00] functionality is all there. So I get real message confirmation.

So if I do a transaction, I get confirmation that something happened or it failed or it's timing out, or something is right.

Brandon Aaskov: You get some sort of information back in a meaningful way and assets governance.

Dave Merwin: My assets, what I own, are front and center. And so like with Phantom, eh, I can see what I own and what I don't own and what's happening and where I've staked stuff.

And even the liquidity tokens that I have, the information is there available to me so that I can track what's going on. So to me, it's about, does the user experience make sense to me? Am I getting. meaningful information when it comes to the confirmations? If you think about it, like with your bank, you do a transaction with your bank and then you get this like weird ledger three weeks later that hasll of this. Like how, I don't even know what this means. Like, why are you sending this to me? Whereas I, feel like a wallet that just says, this is how much went out. This is how much came [00:19:00] in. This is what happened and here's the address. And then links out to the actual blockchain to see the transaction in real-time.

That's also a super.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah, I know. And when people do that, they go though, that's called a block Explorer. When you go to one of those things to explore what the transaction was and where it came from, where it went to and what happened, what block it was in what time, all those details. It's an overwhelming amount of information to look at, and it's boring.

I think that just goes to speak to the user experience stage that we're at, we're still early and just like the early web and like the early nineties it's awkward and clunky. So that Phantom wallet that Dave mentioned is a Solano based wallet for the salon of blockchain. And the user experience is very good.

It's very friendly. I think it's a fantastic first wallet choice. Just exploring the space. So let's put ourselves in the seat of the person who's getting involved. They have now gotten a salon, a wallet. Now I should point out in part one. We're not gonna talk. Buying cryptocurrency and moving it into your wallet or even acquiring NFTs.

We're in browse mode right now. We're just going to be checking some stuff out and understanding this wallet thing and how do I [00:20:00] connect with it and all that stuff. So we've got a Phantom wallet. It's a browser extension. And am I using Chrome here? Probably. Yeah. In fact, if you're not using, you're using safari, please stop.

They're just way behind other browsers and there's bugs in it and security issues. And just try to avoid that, but any Chrome based browser. So I'll say Chrome. Actually I know for facts, this works in Firefox edge, which is the Microsoft internet Explorer. Nowadays you've got “Brave”, which is the auto based browser.

It's kind of privacy-focused. Now there's a bunch of browsers out there that support these connections, these browser extensions for a second.

Dave Merwin:  When we were talking earlier about NFTs doing things. So you know how like everyone is used to having browsers serve ads to you and track you and all that stuff, brave will pay you in a native token.

Brave for letting advertising come to you and you can get paid for participating in those ads or looking at those ads full disclosure.

Brandon Aaskov:  I've been using “Brain” for a little while. So I think at this point I've earned close to [00:21:00] 30 VAT and I actually, I kicked back some of that. So you can actually specify which sites get some of your share and how much that share is of what you've earned.

And so I kicked some of that back to my favorite creators on YouTube and my favorite sites that I go to, they get different percentage breakouts that I get to choose. And so it's nice to put that in my hands. I could say they get nothing, but honestly it felt slimy. And I'd love to kick back to those people and encourage them to move away from traditional models into these new models.

But yeah, I'm 30, but it's only what, like a plus than a dollar now because we're hitting crypto winter. But at one point that would have been like 60 bucks. Just for browsing the web the same way I always do. Yeah. So that was a good little tangent on brave. If you want to check out a new browser and you want to dip your toe into the crypto game, that's another one you can check out.

We've got our Phantom wall extension in the browser. Let's say we're past the seed phrase. You've written it down. You started somewhere safely, you took a Polaroid of it, and now it's in a safe place. It's not going to get destroyed. And it's certainly not online and not in the cloud. Great. Good for you.

Now you're going to have to make a password. It didn't. I just have a password. What was the seed phrase? Why is that different than a password? The seed phrase basically allows you to [00:22:00] reestablish your bank vault at any time. So let's say you lost your computer. It fell into the ocean.

What am I gonna do? Oh yeah. That seed phrase. Now you can regenerate all that stuff. Based on that phrase you had to write down before. Whereas the password is really more of a, I want to keep my snotty kids out of this thing. So they don't go by the teas that I don't want to defy. It's almost like the action code on your TV for renting movies or something like that.

You basically confirm your password. Maybe this is the same password you use for everything. I try not to do that, but you may trust everyone else. You share that password with, I dunno. So you have that password assigned to this wallet now. You're you've opened it. You've got nothing in there.

There's no assets. What does that mean? What's a Sol?

Dave Merwin: Oh my gosh. I thought that was awesome. So the Sol is the actual token on that blockchain.

Brandon Aaskov: So it's seeing like for Salonos.

Dave Merwin: Yeah. So if you want to conduct transactions on the salon of blockchain, you need some variation of a Solano, a coin.

And if you're going to buy an NFT on the salon of blockchain, like from salon art or something [00:23:00] like that, you'll need to have sold it in order to do it. And in order to get that Sol, it has a USD value right now, as I'm looking at it, Sols price is a hundred dollars per soul. So if I put a hundred dollars in, I'll get one Sol in return that I can then use to go buy an NFT or whatever.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah, exactly. It's just, that you're swapping your regular dollars for this digital currency called Sol. And since the price fluctuates right now and you're in a, what was it maybe a couple of months ago? I think one Sol was around 200. So it slides up and down and the market responds as well.

So the pricing of things will reflect the current value of Sol. Okay. We're in Solano, we've got our Phantom wallet. That's for Solana. I should point out to you and I won't go deep down this, but because of Ethereum is a different blockchain, my Phantom wallet, won't just work with OpensSea, which is based on top of it.

You would need the theory-based wallet for that. This is again, we're in the Salono world. Now it's a different blockchain with similar features and a similar ecosystem, but it's much more targeted [00:24:00] toward NFTs. And it's very user-friendly and the transaction fees are cheap. I believe it's what is it like?

Point zero, zero, zero one percent or something like that? Every transaction is very affordable in that regard.

Dave Merwin: So for instance, if you are going to buy a hundred Sol right now, which is, if you're going to spend a hundred dollars to buy Salano, you would get 0.98 Sol and you would pay a 78 cents as a network fee.

Whereas on the Ethereum, if you wanted a hundred dollars worth of Ethereum, you'd probably pay $25 in fees.

Brandon Aaskov: Somewhere between 20 and 30 bucks. I just did it the other day. It's something every time I hate, it's actually, it's definitely off-putting for newbies. So that's one of the reasons why a Salono is a great choice to start.

Yeah. Great user experience across the board. In that regard, I should point out too, for any developers that might be listening or interested in this, there is a standard that drives a lot of these wallets called wallet connect. So you can go check out the docs to that, to see how they interact with wallet connect and basically.

I think there's at least one [00:25:00] wallet on every major blockchain that has a wallet connect, driven applications on it. So you can allow people to connect to your website using wallet connect. All right. So they've got this wallet. They have not stolen it. We'll talk about acquiring that cryptocurrency differently.

And there are no entities in and yet, because I don't have anything to buy it with, but I want to go start poking around at some places. What should I do? Where should I go?

Dave Merwin: Yeah, that's a good question. I would go again. If you're on Solano, you might like, for instance, if I Google something like black and white photo.

Solana, you'll start to come across, like just, this has been a couple of seconds and I'm already coming across salon, NFT photographers, and where you can go look at their work and you can explore some of the creativity of what's going on in the different networks that they're on. So I personally would not start with going to.

Service like Solano art or one of those I would instead go look at what I'm curious in and what I can, where I can go [00:26:00] find that stuff.

Brandon Aaskov: I see. Yeah. It's worth pointing out that you think that there's a misconception, thanks to open. See that you have to go to a marketplace to get these NFTs. hat's actually very much not true and it's especially not true in the salon.

Cool projects

There is a piece of software that they have and the open-source ecosystem called Mediplex and a little piece of software inside of that called candy machine that allows people to set up these sites and easily allow other people to come connect their wallet. Like we mentioned that Phantom wild, so you can connect and log in.

And then I click a button that allows the user themselves to actually mint and create one of those NFTs. That's still remaining, essentially taking a gumball from the candy machine and it is a pretty easy way to get people up and running. So you'll find a lot of standalone, running that software. So you might not find this art you're looking for by going to a magic Eden or a salon art, or maybe even an open, see if you're again in an Ethereum world, but you can find individuals.

The homepage is “insights” that will drive the NFT sales. So it's Google. [00:27:00]

Dave Merwin: Yeah. So for instance even while we're talking, I just found this site that has a really cool mix of both PFPs and photography and art. And it's got a whole bunch of stuff it's called the exchange.art.

Brandon Aaskov: She also pointed out that non-key top-level domains like art.

That XYZ dot labs are actually, that's not even one, but there's a bunch of, you'll see a bunch of those weird top-level domains.gallery and the NFT world. So don't be put off by that. So that's it.

Dave Merwin: A lot of artists won't necessarily have a homepage. Like one of my favorite painters, Trevor Jones did a project with Ice Cube and NFT project, and it's a fabulous project.

It's so cool. He did a bunch of paintings to lyrics that ice cube wrote and then did some augmented realities that when you looked at the painting, it brought up ice cube. A custom music video for that piece. It's such a neat project, but Trevor Jones has his own homepage and his home personality, and he's a really well-known painter and that kind of stuff.[00:28:00]

But a lot of artists are just trying to launch stuff and they won't have a homepage. So they might be discord or on Twitter or just on Instagram. So if you don't find a homepage that promotes an artist, don't panic, it just means they're busy producing art. And they're just trying to. Easiest way to talk about their stuff without having to do a whole bunch more work on creating a website.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah. That's true. Not everyone's oh, I'll just whip up some metroplex and deploy my candy machine. Like they don't know what that means in three artists, they just want to have a community and get going. Yeah, that's a good point. Twitter being almost like the landing page, the homepage for a lot of projects is also not uncommon and finding.

I have a large community of people around a project. You'll usually find them in either discord or telegram. Those seem to be the two popular ecosystems that drive a lot of these communities and these projects. Yes, that's right. If you don't find a homepage, don't feel discouraged. There's probably more digging to do.

Unfortunately, just like that early web, it's not very well indexed. So there are a lot of new projects that come up all the time and you have to do. That product was a really great example. We talked about some [00:29:00] marketplaces to check checkout as well. I think we mentioned it like magic Eden salon art.

There are a few others. This one here is exchanged art. That's good to poke around, but think about cards that speak to you.

Dave Merwin: So I will say one of the things I've started to see come up, and this is totally just no, no opinions, no judgements, but there is a lot more NSFW stuff coming out.

And as people are getting close to the idea of oh, I don't know how to create good art, but I sure do know how to drop porn. So that's definitely becoming more popular. Buyer beware. If you click on the NSFW link on a marketplace, you're going to get what you expect.

Brandon Aaskov: So just don't have your kids sit next to you while you're poking around here.

Exactly. Childspace, it's still the wild west. Yeah. So let's wrap this one up here, but we can move into what to expect, how the whole process goes for buying an NFT, reselling that if people do that next time and getting acquired  to your crypto. So we've mentioned some marketplaces to check out, put yourself in the mindset of someone who's doing that.

Again. I mentioned the Dow thing, actually not I'll make that my pick because I think that's right. We do picks at the end of these. So I'll make my pick links Dow which is if you're a [00:30:00] golfer, go check that out. And there's a similar one, which is the Australian open. They did something like that.

I think the links down one is much more avant-garde and that it's, “Hey, let's raise a bunch of money”. Let's forget all the members of this thing already, that doesn't exist. Now let's go buy a golf course. And that has not, first of all, it hasn't come to pass yet. So let's see what happens there, but also it's a great idea and it might, it could spawn an entirely new generation of these clubs.

So that might, it's a little bit different from the art stuff. So I like pointing that out and that's why I recommend that one. If you want to go poke into that project and see what they did there.

Dave Merwin: So I cheated, cause I said Trevor Jones earlier, so I'm going to switch on you and come up with a different one.

So I'm a big fan of the helium project. And what they're trying to do is create essentially a people's network. So like a wireless economy where if you stake your coins, this...

Brandon Aaskov: is not a salon of project, correct?

Dave Merwin: Yeah. Sorry. No, that's its own thing. Oh, do you want a salon for a  project?

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah. I just want to point out that Helium's just unblocked yet and I was just informing them of something.

Dave Merwin: Essentially the helium [00:31:00] piece is designed to take wireless networking away from the big corporations and make it available to the people. Now I realize that's a bit naive because where are they getting their access from? But that's a whole different question. But anyway, I think it's a really interesting project and I actually own a little bit of it and it seems to be doing okay.

Brandon Aaskov: Yeah, actually maybe we'll wrap up on this note since it comes up a lot and it came up a lot recently in a talk we did with DEPT®. There were a bunch of questions in the chat and I ended up answering those afterward and it was a lot of them centered around aren't these things supposed to be decentralized.

Why are they all so centralized? And there are two categories there. One is how the capital is centralized. I don't want to talk about that. That's a different story, but the tech itself, there's a lot of these hosting services where we have cloud providers today that are owned by big tech. And it is the best way to deploy things quickly and easily across the world.

So a lot of these products are hosted on those big tech platforms. We're still so early on, we're still making building blocks every day in this space. What the helium project, he just referred to as, is a great example of is another building block toward a brighter future where we don't [00:32:00] have all the centralization.

And there's another project that's so complicated and convoluted. I dare you to go look at it, but it's called an internet computer, and it's supposed to be replacing some cloud providers we have today. And you know what, like I said, it's complicated. There's a lot of lingo. We're still early days. We have a long way to go.

We're making baby steps. And if you feel confused and a little lost, that's normal because it's a crazy wild space. There's information blasting at you from all sides and people telling you what's cool and what's hot and what's coming up and what's gonna, Just trust your instincts, try to ignore the noise and just look at a project, turn off the rest of it, read the stuff.

And if you get any of that spidey sense of this feels not right to me, there's too much lingo, too much buzzwords then. Great. It's not a project for you. It's probably not a good product for anybody. Move on to the next one. There's plenty of things to look at. Don't feel like you have to understand everything.

If they're not doing a good job of explaining it to you, that's on them.

Dave Merwin: That's a great point. We can be done on that. I don't think that's. Brandon Aaskov: That's beautiful. Yeah. All right. That's another episode of shipping. Thank you, Dave. And then join us next time. We'll go over all the buying stuff [00:33:00] and tell you what to expect so that you can actually fill your wallet with something meaningful.

Awesome. All right, thanks. Have a good day.