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Ethereum ICO, NFT, DeFi & Smart Contracts - Chris Bell

No Personal Data Needed

Using MetMask

One of my favorite reasons for using Ethereum so often is that I can use MetaMask or Ledger to sign into countless websites rather than logging in with personal data, verifying emails and confirming credit card numbers. Once I log into MetaMask I can use, and without any additional information needed. Imagine a young person about to join the career world, but instead of filling out applications, they open an Ethereum wallet, join Virtual Reality and get a job with Nike as a customer service representative on their parcel of VR land. The VR economy is coming fast and it’s all running on Ethereum gas.

What are ICO’s?

Using Uniswap Decentralized Trading Protocol

Ethereum ERC20 tokens fungible for each other

Ethereum ICO TokensICOs, or Initial Coin Offerings, are coded to a template or standard of Ethereum called ERC20. Simply mint 100, 1,000 or 1,000,000 tokens into your wallet with a small transaction fee, and label it with a title and 4 letter acronyms. One way of using the printed tokens is just like companies will print new shares and offer an IPO, Initial Public Offering. Or, you could hand out each token as a reward for customers buying your product, whether digital or physical. The tokens can represent 1 of 100 votes for a group of soccer coaches in a small city. The tokens could also be necessary to play casino games and arcade games just like going to your local arcade and exchanging your fiat money for tokens to play.

Another way of using an Ethereum token that is obviously centralized, is to do it for fun and socially, where you give out some monthly rewards or artwork to your top token holders participating in your personal network effects online. If you’re looking for a tangible relationship such as USD had to Gold, you won’t find it, you’ll need to put a value on the vote, the rewards you receive or the value of the NFTs in a vault, supported by a DAO. One main factor to remember about ICO fungible tokens is that they can be minted in the millions with only a few dollars, then sold as a representation of a future decentralized project that may never come to fruition.

What are NFTs?

NFTs, or Nonfungible Tokens, can not be traded like the ICO tokens above. NFTs are unique like baseball cards, cars, houses, songs and paintings. When you mint 1 million BELL tokens, they and all be interchanged, but if you build 10 websites with 10 different domain names they cannot be traded between each other as easily. An artist can create a piece of art and only sell one copy, or they can mint 100 or 10,000 copies, which changes the value of each copy created by the same artist. Land tokens give access to build on various sizes of digital land along with closer location to the center spawn point of a virtual reality platform like Somnium Space.

Ethereum ICO Tokens

What is DeFi?

It’s automated code, like notification emails. When we first started using eBay buyers were too scared to send the money first while sellers were too scared to ship the merchandise first. Smart contracts are just lines of code that transact the process automatically, like buying an NFT on OpenSea or selling your minted NFT on Rarible. It happens immediately because the lines of code accept the money and the NFT at the same time, just to send them to opposite wallets. OpenSea’s DeFi contract is one of a million more to come. Uniswap uses smart contracts to trade ICO tokens or fungible tokens. Celcius is a company that holds your crypto in a vault to let customers borrow from the vault with interest rates. The modern piece of the puzzle is that the trusted party in between can be a few lines of code.

Borrowing and lending are new because NFT assets are gaining more liquid values where they can be used as collateral for someone that wants to borrow some ETH without selling their NFTs. I don’t have to hold your NFT in my wallet, I can hold it in a smart contract that I cannot alter, that says to release the NFT to the borrower if they make all the payments, or release it back to me if they payments aren’t on time. It can be written that simple or much more complex with added variables and hypothetical scenarios throughout the term of the loan.

Celsius DeFi CeFi Tokens

DeFi Companies in 2021

Decentralized finance is a term that promotes the process of becoming more decentralized over time, with one smart contract at a time. Similar to the time it took for websites to automate several types of email notifications, companies will now start the process of becoming more DeFi when they see it as a bonus for their customers. A bank can have one DeFi contract that allows users to get a personal loans up to $1,000 by sending a certain type of NFT as collateral. But the bank isn’t DeFi, they just created one DeFi contract among the rest of their CeFi offerings.

Rarible RARI Governance

A true “DeFi company” is very definitely decentralized inside the realm of finance, meaning as infamous as Satoshi Nakamoto at a minimum. Satoshi didn’t mint 21 million tokens to their wallet, they set up the code to allow all of us to slowly grab some coins. Claiming to be fully DeFi is like claiming your company is fully AI or fully automated with robots to answer every question and robots to grow the company. DeFi companies today are better defined as privately held companies with 1-2 smart contracts (DeFi contracts) with arcade tokens printed all to their wallets to manually allocate. This is all fine especially when the company doesn’t claim to “be DeFi” but beware of those that try to pull the wool over your eyes. I’m just hoping to explain this in a way that helps you understand what DeFi is so that you know when a company is actually DeFi or they just want to use the keyword in marketing.

AI Robots

Uniswap is taking strides towards decentralization with a UNI token that's used to vote of new ideas and management decisions, but someone still has to propose and execute the results of the votes. The company is also actively discussing ways of rewarding large amounts of the revenue to UNI holders instead of growing a tech empire. Rarible is also claiming these things.

Uniswap UNI Allocation

Written by: Chris Bell