The Infinite Power of Smart Contracts, Build Your Future Securely
May 31, 2024

The Infinite Power of Smart Contracts, Build Your Future Securely

What are smart contracts and how do they work? See how smart contracts make NFTs and blockchains more capable.

Have you ever failed to keep a promise? Did you ever find yourself at the winning end of a bet just to have the other party refuse to keep their end of the deal? What about the sacred 'pinky promise'? Ever had one of those broken? Well, if you ever found yourself in a situation where you hoped someone's word was enough to keep an agreement just to see that it was all a big lie, or worse, a joke, then you've certainly come to rely on the power of getting agreements down on paper. History learnt this lesson a long time ago. That's how contracts came to be.

Contracts were a challenge to draw out. Which party could be relied upon to draw a fair contract that benefits both or all parties? Also, if the terms of the contract aren't met, then who would impose the necessary actions? Who would keep track of accountability? That's when third parties came into play, they'd be in charge of making sure the terms of these contracts would be followed. Unfortunately, humankind is often subject to the subtle arts of persuasion. One cannot be sure if the terms couldn't be manipulated, forgotten, or lost to time and circumstances. These were risks we had to deal with before technology and blockchain power offered us a greater, more reliable course of action.

Traditional contracts were a risky business

Blockchain technology is coded by humans, but they are run by technology. We create rules written and encrypted by code so the blockchain can execute its commands. To keep things fair, the codes and rules are not set by one party. Rather, they are decided and approved by the majority of users that exist on the blockchain. This is why communities are an essential part of running a blockchain. Bitcoin was the first blockchain that came to be. It confirmed payment transactions which were monitored and execued thanks to digital contracts.

While Bitcoin was the first to see a digital contract in action, it was the Ethereum blockchain that set out to accomplish more with this element of blockchain technology. Ethereum took these digital contracts and turned them into smart contracts by giving them the ability to do more than execute simple buy and sell commands. Smart contracts are the reason decentralized apps (DApps) came to be. With smart contracts in play, users can interact peer-to-peer (P2P) and process transactions permissionlessly. They can also invoke additional functions if the terms of the smart contracts are coded as such when conditions are met.

Smart contracts can be coded to execute nearly anything as long as it is within the power of the blockchain and the coder. Much like physical contracts, it will state conditions, check when the conditions are met, and execute the following action as defined. Only here, these contracts are implimented by the fair, immutable, and trusted nature of the blockchain.

The Ethereum network made smart contracts more capable

To make smart contract coding easy, accessible, and efficient, many blockchains have a smart contract kit that assists new blockchain users in starting their journey on specific blockchains. At the moment, the most popular blockchains to run smart contracts are Ethereum, Solana, Stellar, Tezos, and more. Meanwhile, many other blockchains are still working their way up to deploying advanced smart contracts like that of Ethereum. Cardano is one such blockchain.

NFT smart contracts work similarly. When NFTs are minted, they belong to the person who minted them. According to its NFT smart contract, once the NFT is bought, its ownership is then transfered to the new owner and the transaction is forever recorded on the digital ledger that is the blockchain. Often, NFTs come with additional features and exclusive perks for its owner. This is further defined and executed by its smart contract.

There are specific smart contracts that execute NFT sales, perks, and ownership

NFT smart contracts can be created on the Ethereum platform by two major standards. The first is ERC-721. This version is the pioneer, hence, it is more commonly used. The other is ERC-1155. The major difference between the two is that ERC-1155 smart contracts can facilitate the transfer of multiple assets under one contract. This helps reduce gas fees so the network faces less congestion issues. By having smart contracts that can do more than confirm and execute payment transactions, we can do so much more with our digital assets on blockchains.

For instance, the emergence of the metaverse has led to a rise in digital assets. Users who frequent the metaverse tend to use NFTs to enter spaces and showoff their virtual lifestyle and establish their digital identity. Fashion and gaming NFT are all the rage now thanks to advanced smart contracts that can ensure additional perks for NFT owners. Even the rise of real estate NFTs has come into demand. Much like sports and music NFTs that have become so much more than collectible memorabilia. NFT smart contracts checks ownership, handles transferability, and can even handle royalty compensation.

Pop uses smart contracts to support both fungible and non-fungible digital assets

Pop uses smart contacts for its Pop NFT collection and its two native tokens - $PPT and $PGT. The NFTs are managed by ERC-721 standard smart contracts. This ensures that Pop NFTs are always in the hands of its singular owner. Every Pop NFT will be unique to its owner. On Pop, users can level up their NFTs to unlock bonus features within the Pop app. These NFTs are transferable and can be traded, bought, or sold in an open NFT marketplace.

If you're eager to see what the Pop experience entails, you can find out now as an exclusive closed alpha tester. Pop is giving its community and dedicated fans the chance to see the app before the rest of the world. Alpha testers will also get a glimpse at the Pop Genesis NFT collection. The official collection will be available to Pop app users from its official launch day. Check out our official social and community channels to start your journey as an alpha tester today!