The Interchain Foundation advances the Cosmos ecosystem
Thursday, May 25, 2023
The Cosmos Interchain Foundation has announced the allocation of $40M for ecosystem development in 2023, the ICF is also funding projects to drive Cosmos's adoption and use cases, including programs like the Interchain Developer Academy and Interchain Builders Program.
The Interchain Foundation (ICF) successfully stewarded the launch of the Interchain NFT standard (ICS-721), an application-layer protocol allowing NFT interoperability between chains in the interchain, the Cosmos ecosystem, and soon the Ethereum, Near and Polkadot ecosystems. Developed by Bianjie, a long-term technical contributor to Cosmos, the Interchain NFT standard is a universal standard where users can create, transfer and track the ownership of their NFTs as they move from chain to chain.
Interchain NFTs allow artists and developers to expand their user base and leverage the unique capabilities and communities of different chains, platforms, and apps between IBC-enabled Ethereum, Substrate, CosmWasm, and Cosmos SDK chains. Chain compatibility and flexibility will open up new surface areas and opportunities for multi-chain Metaverse and GameFi development. More chains not only mean more exposure and a more extensive base to trade these assets, but also, users can lend their NFTs, post them as collateral, or exchange them for DAO tokens to become part of different communities. Through ICS-721, ownership of Interchain NFTs can be preserved without reminting, and no additional permission is needed. To keep things simple, NFT functions like minting and burning remain on the token’s original chain.
Cosmos Interchain Foundation allocates $40M for ecosystem development in 2023
Harriet Cao, Founder of Bianjie, said, "Web3 can often look like a maze of different chains, tokens, and communities fragmented. All kinds of assets, tokens, and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are typically tied to the chain they’re created on and cannot easily transfer to another chain or app. Marketplaces and platforms cannot grow when there are limited means for exchange and overlap. Now developers can leverage multiple chains when building with NFTs, whether to reflect the state of multiple chains or create multi-chain metaverses or game worlds. And as NFTs are increasingly used to represent governance rights and access keys to token-gated communities, Interchain NFTs provide a larger, more fluid market with better price discovery for assets with these use cases."
Interchain NFTs underlying protocol is the trust-minimized IBC protocol; it doesn’t rely on anonymous third parties to authenticate the transfer. The IBC protocol, the industry standard for interoperability, currently has 53 chains that support it, with $30.3 billion in cross-chain transfers in 2022. With over $60 billion in digital assets across 70+ sovereign chains, the Cosmos appchain thesis is gaining momentum, as evidenced by the ongoing migrations of projects like Delphi Labs’ Mars Protocol and the dYdX decentralized exchange. Actively supporting and incentivizing development within the ecosystem, the Interchain Foundation plays an integral role in maintaining the Interchain stack, the Cosmos SDK, Cosmos Hub, Comet BFT, and IBC, and community-driven initiatives to drive innovation within Cosmos. As a steward of the interchain, last year, the Interchain Foundation funded $48.1 million to support the development and adoption of open-source technologies at the heart of the ecosystem, including Comet BFT, Cosmos SDK, Inter Blockchain Communication protocol, and the Cosmos Hub.
Maria Gomez, Board of Management Director, said, "The launch of the IBC protocol in 2021 brought the vision of the interchain online, connecting isolated communities competing for capital and attention in a disjointed ecosystem. Now, the launch of Interchain NFTs extends the freedom of movement. Interchain citizens enjoy non-fungible tokens, linking more chains and people. With this tool, Web3 looks less like a maze and more like a series of open paths."
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