In early August, non-fungible token trading (NFT) platform OpenSea announced that its volume for the year had surpassed $1 billion. By comparison, Opensea generated $24 million in the year 2020 and $8 million in 2019. In terms of NFT sales, this market generated more than $2.5 billion in the first half of 2021. This trend is expected to continue given the excitement of these new assets and the innovations they offer us.
NFT and artificial intelligence, an unlikely combination
In May 2021, the Robert Alice studio and Alethea AI collaborated to create the first “intelligent NFT” or iNFT named Alice. Indeed, this NFT is based on machine learning software that uses a dialogue generation system based on the OpenAI GPT-3 engine. Basically, this means that it is capable of holding relatively simple conversations.
Each machine learning language model is built from a starting text, an initial document that forms the basis of its vocabulary. However, Alice “learns” from each interaction with the audience. This unique property of this NFT makes the learning base of the model almost decentralized since each time it changes ownership it will expand its lexicon, and then its conversational possibilities.
“Today we have still images, GIFs and videos. The next iteration will be where you can have interaction and some level of intelligence in the character itself or in the art form […] We are developing a protocol that will allow you to take any NFT, transpose it into the smart contract infrastructure that we have designed, and make it intelligent and interactive.”Arif Khan, CEO of Alethea AI
This first iNFT sold for $478,000 on the Sotheby’s art gallery website. However, it appears to be the first in a long line. Once the Alethea Ai protocol is finalized, we’ll be able to chat with our favorite CryptoPunk.
Major investors scramble to participate in Alethea Ai token sale
In an August 24 release, Alethea AI announced the closing of its $16 million private token sale. The deal brought together an impressive list of investors from all corners of the cryptosphere. The deal was supported by Crypto.com Capital, Multicoin Capital and Alameda Research among others.
Billionaire and NFT aficionado Mark Cuban also participated in the private sale. Indeed, Cuban has become known this year for his particularly optimistic statements about NFTs, which he sees as a “game changer” on the scale of the art market. The billionaire has also launched his own NFT marketplace Lazy.com, which doubles as a virtual art gallery.
The funding will be used to build a “scalable AI infrastructure for NFTs” that will give digital collectibles more dynamic features. Alethea hopes to move the world of NFTs beyond expensive videos and artworks to “fully interactive, engaging, and autonomous objects that can learn and evolve from their environment.”
The idea is that multiple iNFTs with their own personalities can interact with each other in a parallel, digital, AI-powered world. And, it seems that this proposal resonates with big investors, given the project’s prestigious list of backers. The company worked closely with Open AI to design its iNFT technology.