Ordinal projects are the latest craze in Bitcoin evolution. Also referred to as digital artifacts, these allow people to inscribe NFTs in each satoshi. The first of these was only launched in January this year but it has since ballooned in numbers by over 200,000.
Ordinal Projects at a Glance
The Taproot upgrade in the Bitcoin network paved the way for this new use case for the world’s oldest successful blockchain. Basically, ordinals allow the inscription of different kinds of NFTs into each satoshi. Satoshi or sat is the smallest fractional unit of Bitcoin equivalent to a hundred millionth of a BTC (0.00000001 BTC).
The most common forms of NFTs already inscribed successfully in ordinal projects involve JPEG images and other forms of digital art. However, it was proven to be able to hold a profile picture (PFP) project and even a playable version of the 1993 Doom video game in a single sat, too. All these were made possible without the need to create a sidechain or another token.
Several other use cases for ordinals may be discovered in the future. Even the credited proponent of the system, Udi Wertheimer, seems to be unsure as to how far they could go.
One thing is clear though, and that’s people are now racing to discover how far can it go and consequently unlock more capabilities of the system for bragging rights and potential financial gains.
Numbers Going Up
The number of ordinal projects continues to increase. They pumped by over 100,000 just weeks after their initial launch during the Valentine’s Day celebration, flooding the Bitcoin network. Then, as the month of February draws to a close, the figures are already above the 200,000 mark according to Dune Analytics.
Despite these, there are numerous assumptions from naysayers that the interest in these new projects is slowly waning. The worry comes after the mining fees plunged from $170,000 to $11,000 in barely two weeks.
On February 15, Ordinals on the Bitcoin network generated inscription fees going above $170,500. This resulted in over $1.31 million in income for miners on the system. From then on, the fees declined to $54,000 and just treading above $11,000 as of writing.
Amid the mixed sentiments, Yuga Labs, a company with a $4 billion valuation and creator of the famous Bored Ape Yacht Club, is gearing up to unleash a barrage of its new Ordinal projects later this week. The new collection called “TwelveFold” will feature 300 limited-edition generative artworks. Each of these will be inscribed in the Bitcoin blockchain and auctioned to interested parties.
The arrival of one of the highest-profile NFT makers in the network is projected to drive up the momentum of the Bitcoin ecosystem going forward.
Ordinal projects certainly hold a lot of promise on the Bitcoin blockchain. NFTs and the other existing projects in the network only form the proverbial tip of the iceberg, and these may not be the optimum way to realize the full potential of each sat in the system. Hopefully, more use cases for Ordinal projects will be unlocked soon as ways to circumvent the different barriers of the Bitcoin network are explored.
Giancarlo is an economist by profession with a career spanning nearly two decades. His professional journey has seen him assume vital roles in various government and private organizations such as the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Megaworld Corporation, and the China Banking Corporation in the Republic of the Philippines.
In addition to his civic and corporate pursuits, his forward-thinking approach has led him to manage several prominent websites in the banking and finance sector, notably the Australia-based RateChoice, where he immersed himself in the world of emerging financial technologies and where he found particular interest in Bitcoin all the way back to 2013.
Prior to his addition to Blockzeit’s dynamic team, he held an essential role as Project Manager for initiatives encompassing blockchain, stablecoin, mining, special economic zone development, and iGaming. This noteworthy chapter in his career unfolded under the auspices of InPlan Consultancy Services, Inc., the think-tank of IMPERO Consortium Management Corporation headquartered in Manila, Philippines, and Tokyo, Japan. InPlan, led by a distinguished retired Cabinet member of the Philippines, collaborates directly with IMPERO’s core management team, contributing to strategic planning and business development endeavors.