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The Interchain Foundation advances the Cosmos ecosystem


The Interchain Foundation (ICF) has successfully led the launch of the Interchain NFT Standard (ICS-721), an application layer protocol that enables NFT interoperability between chains in the interchain, the Cosmos ecosystem and soon the Ethereum, Near and Polka Dot Ecosystems. The Interchain NFT Standard, developed by Bianjie, a longtime technical contributor to Cosmos, is a universal standard where users can create, transfer and track ownership of their NFTs as they move from chain to chain.

Interchain NFTs enable artists and developers to expand their user base and leverage the unique capabilities and communities of different chains, platforms, and apps across IBC-enabled Ethereum, Substrate, CosmWasm, and Cosmos SDK chains. Chain compatibility and flexibility will open up new surfaces and opportunities for multi-chain Metaverse and GameFi development. More chains not only mean more exposure and a more extensive base from which to trade these assets, but users can also borrow their NFTs, place them as collateral, or exchange them for DAO tokens to become part of different communities. Through ICS-721, ownership of Interchain NFTs can be retained without reassignment and no additional authorization is required. To keep things simple, NFT functions such as hit and burn remain on the token’s original chain.

The Cosmos Interchain Foundation is allocating $40 million for ecosystem development by 2023

Harriet Cao, founder of Bianjie, said: “Web3 can often look like a maze of various chains, tokens and fragmented communities. All types of assets, tokens and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are usually tied to the chain they’re created on and can’t be easily ported to another chain or app. Marketplaces and platforms can’t grow if there are limited resources for exchange and overlap. Now developers can use multiple chains when building with NFTs, whether it’s state of multiple chains or create multiple chain-metaverses or game worlds.And as NFTs are increasingly used to represent governance rights and access keys for token-gated communities, Interchain NFTs offer a larger, more fluid market with better price discovery for assets with these use cases.”

Interchain NFT’s underlying protocol is the trust-minimized IBC protocol; it does not rely on anonymous third parties to verify the transfer. The IBC protocol, the industry standard for interoperability, currently has 53 chains supporting it, with $30.3 billion in cross-chain transfers by 2022. With more than $60 billion in digital assets across more than 70 sovereign chains, the Cosmos appchain thesis gaining momentum as evidenced by the continued migrations of projects such as Delphi Labs’ Mars Protocol and the dYdX decentralized exchange. The Interchain Foundation actively supports and encourages development within the ecosystem and 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 the steward of the interchain, the Interchain Foundation last year 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, director of the board of directors, said: “The launch of the IBC protocol in 2021 brought the interchain vision online, connecting isolated communities competing for capital and attention in a disjointed ecosystem. Now the launch is expanding of Interchain NFTs express freedom of movement. Interchain citizens enjoy non-fungible tokens, connecting more chains and people together. With this tool, Web3 is less like a maze and more like a series of open trails.”

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