Metapunks is not an average NFT project which mindlessly follows the hype and launches on Ethereum, BSC or Solana. We have chosen the blockchain neither by copying others nor at random. We actually have some solid reasons why Algorand is the future of the Metaverse. But first of all, let us briefly describe why we think none of the most prevalent blockchains is a solid choice.

NFT 3D Metapunk on Algorand

Easy question. I will answer in one picture.

Yet another easy question. BSC is centralized. Very centralized. It has 21 validators; all of them belong to CZ or his friends. Basically, it means that your money does not belong to you; it belongs to CZ. Funds are not SAFU!

Have you seen anything running on Cardano yet? We haven’t. Cardano has been around for a while, amassed tons of fans and reached a crazy market cap, but it is still the same as it was five years ago: vaporware.

Cardano has a long history of overpromising yet underdelivering.

First of all, Avalanche has security issues. And the way they handle them is… well… not trustworthy.

Not so long ago, a bug caused double-spending (basically sending tokens once and receiving them twice). Double-spending is a severe issue that should be communicated ASAP and handled with great care. Do you know how the Avalanche team approached it? They manually deleted transactions from their official explorer in an attempt to cover this up.

Also, have you tried to make sense of Avalanche’s c-chain, x-chain, p-chain and others? We did, and we can’t recommend it.

Oh boy, finally we got to Solana. Actually, it has many issues. It’s just that Solana boys don’t know about most of them.

The first [and only widely known] issue is that Solana has crazy validator requirements. It already requires 24 cores, 128 GB Memory, 2 TB NVMe, 1 GB Network and a high-end graphics card. Not your average consumer PC, right? Not even a powerful gaming computer. And requirements will increase in the future, leading to even fewer people being able to afford to run a validator. Which, in turn, will make Solana even more centralized.

However, this is not the only issue!

Solana nodes store the whole network state, which is snowballing. You can either keep it in memory which will get prohibitively expensive quite soon, or constantly add and replace SSDs. Each SSD is unlikely to survive more than one year, given the tremendous load Solana puts on it. So, burn rates will be crazy. And don’t forget that Solana nodes also consume tons of electricity, which is expensive and bad for the environment.

Additionally, Solana is the only blockchain that does consensus votes on-chain. It means that around 80% are technical transactions that do not do anything useful from the user’s perspective. Each validator spends 1–2 SOL per day on fees for consensus voting transactions, which amounts to at least 50k$ per year.

Other transactions are barely visible next to “Vote” ones.

I could go on and on, but I think you got the picture. If you are interested to learn more, check out this Twitter thread.

Polygon is a Level 2 (L2) solution. L2 means it’s another layer on top of Ethereum (L1) with its consensus. Despite having some advantages over Ethereum, such as faster and cheaper transactions, it has limitations too:

  • Security: L2s are less safe than L1 by their nature. You have to trust not only Ethereum consensus but also Polygon consensus. More entities to trust means more points of failure. Also, more layers mean more complexity which grows exponentially. And complexity leads to a larger attack surface.
  • Liquidity split: some people prefer Ethereum, some people prefer Polygon. It’s good to have a choice, but there is a caveat: liquidity gets divided into multiple parts. In practice, users will get worse exchange rates and higher volatility which may cause some liquidations.
  • Inconvenient transfers: sending MATIC (the only token you can send) from Polygon to Ethereum using their PoS Bridge (the only way to do it) takes roughly seven days. Welcome to the future of finance, where you have to wait for a week to transfer your funds!

We believe that despite L2 technologies having their use cases, the best solution for web3 is an L1 that is so good that it doesn’t need L2s.

And such L1 exists!

Why Algorand

We believe that Algorand is the future of finance because it has all the properties we desire from L1. It is:

  • Fast
  • Secure
  • Decentralized
  • Forkless
  • Sustainable

Currently, Algorand can process around 3000 transactions per second (TPS) with instant finality. Not a mind-blowing number, but more than enough for 2021. Some popular blockchains are orders of magnitude behind! 😉

Algorand can scale to at least 45000 TPS. 45k genuine transactions, not dummy consensus ones. All of this without sacrificing decentralization and security.

Algorand does have not only high throughput but also short finalization time. It is only 4.5 seconds now, which will shrink to 2.5 soon.

Here is the link for more performance details.

I am going to be sincere here. We are not cryptography experts, so we cannot appropriately verify Algorand security. Even if we were, this task requires multiple months of work by a dedicated team. And even in this case, the best result would be “we couldn’t find any flaws”, not “we guarantee it is perfectly secure”.

However, we can judge the project by its own track record and by the track record of its creators. Fortunately, Algorand looks impressive from this point of view.

Algorand was created by Silvio Micali, MIT professor, recipient of the Turing Award (“the “Nobel Prize” of computer science), and co-inventor of zk-proofs (which are extensively used in modern cryptocurrencies).

I can assure you, this guy appreciates cryptography and knows how to do it right. He dedicated his life to it, participated in some foundational work, and received the highest honors for it.

Algorand’s track record is flawless. Unlike some competitors, it has never had a security-related incident. Additionally, Algorand smart contracts were designed with security in mind, considering the many flaws of Solidity, which makes it much easier to build an unhackable dApp.

Even Charles Hoskinson, the creator of Cardano, acknowledged Algorand’s beautiful tech and said, “Finally, we have some real competition”.

Most modern chains use delegated proof-of-stake algorithm (DPoS) to validate blocks without wasting much power. The core idea of proof of stake is simple: nodes have voting power proportional to the stake (amount of tokens) they hold (unlike proof-of-work chains where voting power is implicitly proportional to hashrate). However, if there are many validators, coordination among them gets hard, which makes things very slow.

That’s why most modern chains use delegation. Instead of voting directly, node A can delegate its stake to node B, allowing B to vote on behalf of node A. DPoS is similar to representative democracy. Most nodes don’t vote but just choose who they trust to vote for them.

DPoS sounds good on paper but leads to some centralization. Since the number of voting nodes is small and known in advice, they are vulnerable to various attacks (e.g. denial of service) by malicious entities.

Unlike most other chains, Algorand uses pure proof-of-stake (PPoS), which is more decentralized. Each user’s voting power is proportional to its stake. Users are randomly and secretly selected to propose blocks and vote on block proposals. All online users have the chance to be chosen to propose and vote. PPoS is more similar to direct democracy.

Unlike Bitcoin and many others, all Algorand blocks are 100% final. The blockchain is mathematically proven to be immune from forks. Why is this important?

Just imagine your favorite blockchain has a new hard fork. You would have two versions of your NFT on both chains, so now the NFT is not unique. Which NFT is genuine, and which one is a mere copy? There is no way to decide.

With Algorand, you can be sure that your unique NFT is protected and will never be duplicated.

According to a report by The New York Times, the creation of an average NFT has a stunning environmental footprint of over 200 kilograms of planet-warming carbon, equivalent to driving 500 miles in a typical American gasoline-powered car.

In contrast to this, minting NFTs on Algorand has a tiny carbon footprint. Algorand went even further and pledged to become carbon negative.

Conclusion

The choice of an L1 is not an easy one because each project has its own pros and cons. We carefully weighed them and made our decision.

Currently, Algorand is not perfect. It is not as decentralized as Ethereum. It is not as popular as Cardano. It is backed neither by Binance nor FTX. It has no huge marketplaces like OpenSea. It does not leverage widely known tools like Metamask. The developer ecosystem, albeit excellent, is still tiny compared to Solidity and has not so many examples.

This is the present. But we are looking into the future. Crypto is still only starting. Imagine smartphones before iPhone. Or the web before Google.

It is important to have a head start, but delivering the best product is crucial.

We truly believe in Algorand and its strong fundament under it. Our ambition is not only NFTs creation but supporting and developing this DeFi ecosystem.
Algorand is the future of finance, and we are joining it.
Let’s do it together.

3D NFT Metapunks on Algorand

Collection of 10k generated 3D punks on #Algorand. The most stylish avatars for the Metaverse.