Billionaire tech entrepreneur Reid Hoffman, best known for co-founding business networking platform LinkedIn, is releasing a series ofSolana-based NFTs based on images he creates using OpenAI’sDALL-E 2 artificial intelligence software.
Hoffmanannounced the initiative todayon Twitter, noting that he would auction the first piece starting today onMagic Eden, the largest SolanaNFTmarketplace.
The project, called Untranslatable Words, will span 11 pieces of tokenized images originally created via DALL-E 2, which generates art based on written prompts.
“Anyone can ‘right-click-save’ a DALL-E original and make infinite copies,” he wrote. “Enter: NFTs—a technology for making a digital asset provably scarce and unique. What happens when you combine two of the most significant technological changes? How might they come together?”
Inspired by the potential of DALL•E and NFTs — and the possibilities that they unleash together — my team and I have created a number of small image collections that we’ll be tokenizing as NFTs.
The first collection debuts on Magic Eden today.
Here’s why I’m experimenting:
— Reid Hoffman (@reidhoffman) July 21, 2022
The first piece in the collection, “mångata,” isup for auctionand has a current top bid of 12 SOL, or about $517. The Swedish term means “the road-like reflection of the moon on water,” according to the Magic Eden listing. Hoffman wrote that he was inspired by “words that exist in another language where no single-word equivalent in your own language exists.”
He plans to split the funds generated by each piece between charitable causes as well as his team of collaborators. Any NFT that is not purchased during the auctions will be burned, or permanently destroyed.
An NFT is a blockchain token that can prove ownership for an item, such as artwork, collectibles, and video game items. The NFT market grew dramatically in 2021, generating some$25 billion worth of trading volume, withanother $20 billionlogged so far this year.
DALL-E 2 images have been widely shared across the internet since the latest iteration of OpenAI’s platform was announced in April. The software creates various pieces of artwork based on user-provided text, and can yieldsurprisingly accurate results—even from combinations of unrelated terms.
While full of potential, OpenAI acknowledges that its technology also calls for thoughtful policies to reduce abuse and bias.
Until yesterday, commercializing images generated by DALL-E 2 was prohibited by OpenAI, as the project was still in a “preview” release state. Documentation for the project evenspecifically cites the sale of NFTsas being disallowed by the terms and conditions.
However, OpenAIlaunched a new beta version yesterdaythat enables commercialization rights for creators who generate images, apparently allowing Hoffman’s NFT project to exist. He’s a board member at OpenAI, and has written extensively about DALL-E on his LinkedIn page.
“Visual expression can’t exist without technology,”Hoffman wroteon Wednesday. “Great artists have always been great innovators. If groundbreaking artists like Da Vinci, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keefe, and Frida Kahlo were alive today, I’m sure they’d be experimenting with DALL-E.”
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