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Welcome to NFT Mania, but WTF is an NFT? Let’s Ask Casmir!

At Crypto Tutors our mission is to “simplify cryptocurrency through e-learning and 1:1 tutoring to empower you to transform knowledge into wealth." If you visit the Crypto Tutors YouTube channel you will see that we are also harnessing the power of edutainment, i.e. entertaining and educational content to also teach. The Crypto Couch for instance is a show we produce where we host Crypto Kings & Queens. These individuals are thought leaders, they are a part of the vanguard shaping the past, present, and future of cryptocurrency and blockchain. Case in point, Casmir Patterson. Casmir Patterson is a self-taught blockchain developer who began his engineering career specifically to bring the idea to life by building the smart contract for SneakrCred where you can “Buy, Sell and Trade, Rare Digital Sneakers on the Blockchain.

To help you better understand our 3-part interview with Casmir on the Crypto Couch, we want to make sure you first understand the basic technical aspects of NFTs. For starters, “non-fungible tokens'' better known as NFTs is a term used to describe a unique digital asset whose ownership is tracked on a blockchain, such as Ethereum. Assets that can be represented as NFTs range from digital goods, such as items that exist within virtual worlds, to claims on physical assets such as clothing items or real estate.

While the Ethereum ecosystem is where most NFT activity has taken place to date, NFTs can exist on other smart contract platforms too. This is because, at their core, NFTs are just digital abstractions used to represent assets that are one of a kind. A non-fungible token isn’t the most intuitive term since we don’t commonly refer to the fungibility of objects in the physical world, but this is an important technical distinction when it comes to how an asset is represented on a blockchain. For reference, Investopedia defines fungibility as the ability of a good or asset to be interchanged with other individual goods or assets of the same type. Fungible assets like securities simplify the exchange and trade processes, as fungibility implies equal value between the assets. Dollar bills are fungible — each dollar bill is worth exactly the same as every other one. But works of art, for example, or any collectible, can be non-fungible — their value varies based on the market for that particular asset. With crypto, these assets carry digital ownership rights that can be easily exchanged. NFTs are powerful because, when combined with other financial building blocks on Ethereum, they allow anyone to issue, own, and trade them. This makes interacting with NFTs significantly more efficient than in traditional platforms. The same reason why cryptocurrency used in payments is more efficient than traditional payments, that it is borderless and significantly easier to transfer, applies to NFTs. For example, if you want to create tradable in-game items as a game developer, then you can instantly have them be tradable through protocols that allow for decentralized exchange of NFTs. You don’t have to create your own marketplace or go through the onboarding process of a centralized platform in order to have the items be tradable.

NFT activity can go well past trading and include actions like being able to borrow and lend, support fractional ownership (e.g. NIFTEX), or use it as collateral in taking out a loan (e.g. NFTfi). The possibilities are endless when you have the ability to combine NFTs with DeFi building blocks. A few of the most popular use-cases:

The Gaming industry: The gaming industry and non-fungible tokens are a perfect match! Imagine being able to check a detailed history of the magic shield or sword you have just bought. NFTs can provide proof of ownership for every item within blockchain-

supported games. NFTs first captured the attention of the mainstream crypto community in 2017 with the launch of Ethereum (ETH) collectibles game, CryptoKitties.

Digital Art: NFTs create new ways for collectors and investors to buy, sell, and trade digital art. Digital art is the next evolution of art. Each piece can incorporate complex movement and motion into the art. A single screen on a wall can periodically cycle through different pieces of art at the predetermined direction of the homeowner or art collector. The digital art can be sent to anyone in the world with a few clicks of a button, it is immune from damage, and

authenticity and provenance is transparently available for anyone to verify. Beeple made art history when the piece pictured below “Crossroads” sold for $6.6 million at Nifty Gateway.

With scarcity and demand comes value—and when you add virality into the mix, NFTs representing digital art are demonstrating their potential to open up dynamic marketplaces where creators can release unique artworks, and collectors can have fun buying and trading them.

Now that you have more context watch our interview with Casmir Patterson to dive even deeper down the NFT rabbit hole and feel free to thank Casmir directly on Twitter @askcasmir and #CryptoCouch

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