This article is based on the views of Tascha Che, founder of Tascha Labs, on his personal social media platform, and BlockBeats has organized and translated it as follows:
In order to make an NFT avatar, it took me a full 15 hours and an additional $1000. In my opinion, blockchain technology does have a long way to go as a solution for digital identity.
First of all, let me talk about why I want to make an NFT avatar. As a crypto influencer, my Twitter account is often faked by people who sell fake investment courses or paid memberships in my name and have a bad impact on my reputation.
Worst of all, I’ve asked Twitter to verify my account multiple times and it’s been rejected…
Therefore, when Twitter Blue launched the NFT avatar function, I had an idea: since NFT is a non-fungible token that can be tracked on the chain, then I can make an NFT named “Tascha Che” and put it Connecting to my twitter account for verification is like an ID card in the Metaverse.
I immediately found a computer graphics artist from Russia who made a very nice header image from my Youtube video.
But the problem comes when I try to turn it into an NFT. Next, I will expand the whole process of making NFT avatar step by step. After reading it, you will understand why I said that the era when everyone has a Metaverse identity is far from here.
Step 1: Write the NFT contract
Since I need to have my own ID, it doesn’t make sense to create NFTs through platforms like OpenSea, as they use their own shared contracts. Also, on OpenSea, your NFTs are not minted until they are sold or transferred.
So I created a contract from scratch. It’s actually quite easy, just copy and paste a few lines of code, but here’s the problem, you can’t expect everyone in society to manually deploy their own contracts, right?
Step 2: Deploy the contract
After writing the contract, I had to think about a question: should I deploy it on a new chain like Avalanche or Polygon, or stick with the old Ethereum mainnet?
Since Twitter obtains NFT data from the Metamask wallet, all EVM-compatible chains can be connected through custom RPC, so technically speaking, there should be no problem in extracting NFT data from other public chains.
It only cost me $10 to deploy the NFT contract to Avalanche, and $1,000 on the Ethereum mainnet, which is nothing to consider.
But if the cost is too low, will other impostors use the same elements to make an NFT exactly like me? Although the hash value is unique, the metadata is not. Who can decide whether the Token ID “0x98a4ff8d…” is the real Tascha? In the real world, where your identity is determined by social context, the context in the virtual world is much weaker. While blockchain can help to some extent, it cannot fully solve the problem.
I finally decided to deploy to Ethereum because I think few impostors would be willing to incur such a huge cost. To a certain extent, this is also a “distorted” proof-of-stake mechanism (Proof of Stake).
I find this extremely ironic. Just as luxury and slowness are the value props of equestrianism today, high cost and low speed are the value props of Ethereum today.
To realize its potential as a value network, blockchain needs to be a car or a plane, not a horse. Requiring people to verify the validity of their IDs by paying high fees is not scalable. But unfortunately, the average value of Ethereum NFTs is much higher than that of NFTs on other chains, which is not only expensive to deploy, but has gradually become a game for the rich.
Step 3: Minting NFTs
As you know, the metadata of NFTs – images, videos, texts, etc. is not stored on the blockchain because the space on the chain is limited. This is one of the reasons many people question NFTs, as creators can change metadata after deploying the contract, or swap image files stored off-chain. Whether this is a defect of NFT remains to be discussed.
On the one hand, allowing metadata to be changed without restrictions does break trust in any identity system, even if most creators have no incentive to change the metadata. On the other hand, as the holder of the Metaverse ID, you should also have the right to change the metadata, just like you change your ID photo every few years.
At the end of the day, NFTs are a general-purpose technology, and we currently don’t have tools that are mature enough to meet the needs of different use cases.
In the end I decided to create a repository on Amazon AWS to store all the metadata and included the link in my NFT. It turned out to be a blessing for me to be able to change the metadata, and I’ll tell you why below.
Step 4: Render the NFT on OpenSea and Metamask
After minting the NFT, I plan to go to OpenSea to see the final result. Normally OpenSea automatically renders all NFTs you create when you connect Metamask, but strangely, my newly minted NFTs are showing a blank page with no name or description…
The website page didn’t give any error message. After various attempts to no avail, I went to NFT boss CHANCE (Nuclear Nerds chief developer) for help, and finally he found a redundant metadata in my metadata JSON file. comma.
Once the metafile is fixed in AWS, the NFT image shows up. Imagine if I couldn’t change the metadata, the 0.5 ETH I spent earlier was wasted, and I got a junk that didn’t show anything.
You might say to me, “Tascha, the testnet is there to prevent this, you should deploy it on the testnet first!” Yes, I admit I’m stupid, but having OpenSea or Metamask pop up an error should Not difficult, right? Sometimes I feel that Web 3.0 is just a bunch of idiots leading a bunch of dumber people around…
Anyway, my NFT is still rendered. Everything should be fine by now, right? The answer is no.
Step 5: Connect the NFT to Twitter
I went to “Edit Profile Picture” and selected the rendered NFT. After being directed to Metamask, the application prompted that my NFT data could not be extracted.
After researching for half a day I found out that you have to enable OpenSea API in Metamask security settings, because both Metamask and Twitter rely on OpenSea to query your NFTs.
That’s right, behind the hyped blockchain-backed ownership, my Metaverse identity still relies on a SQL database in the OpenSea cloud server.
Nonetheless, I enabled the OpenSea API and my NFT header finally appeared on Twitter. I didn’t realize until then that actually the only difference between the NFT header image is that it has a hexagonal frame, to outsiders it looks almost indistinguishable from a normal header image, you have to click the image from the profile page to get the details of the NFT.
I think there’s a reason Twitter blurs the distinction between NFT headers, the problem that this feature solves is vague, is it to let people show off their expensive NFTs, or is it to drive the development of Metaverse identities?
After the whole process, I’m still not sure if my NFT ID will actually help people identify my impostor, only time will tell.
Don’t get me wrong, I have no doubts about the huge impact blockchain and NFTs have on the world as a general-purpose technology. But we are in the primitive stages of development, both the execution of the application and the infrastructure for the actual use case are poor, so it is not a bad thing to be rational about the current state of the industry.
Posted by:CoinYuppie，Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/how-bad-is-the-experience-of-making-an-nft-a-twitter-avatar/
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