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A Visual Guide to Profile Picture NFTs

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Profile picture NFTs

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A Visual Guide to Profile Picture NFTs

How do you represent yourself on social media? For most people it’s a selfie, a photo with their friends, or a picture of their pet—but what about a digitally-created character?

Profile picture NFTs are pieces of digital artwork that people use to express themselves online. Each item is a depiction of a character’s face, and has a unique mix of attributes that gives it a sense of collectability.

Like other NFTs, they’re secured on a blockchain and can be bought and sold for cryptocurrency. And while there’s nothing to stop you from screenshotting an NFT and using it for your own profile, the market for these items continues to grow.

To learn more, this infographic explains how three well-known profile picture NFT collections were created.

CryptoPunks

CryptoPunks are commonly regarded as one of the first examples of NFTs. The collection consists of 10,000 unique “punks” and was released in 2017 by Larva Labs.

One interesting fact is that these NFTs were originally given out for free—today, they are worth thousands or millions of dollars each. According to OpenSea, one of the largest NFT marketplaces, CryptoPunk #3100 was sold for 4,200 Ethereum (roughly $7.6 million) in March 2021.

A large component of #3100’s perceived value is its blue alien skin, which only eight other punks have. In other words, it’s incredibly rare. The following table shows the species distribution of the CryptoPunks collection.

Species% Rarity
Human98.7%
Zombie0.88%
Ape0.24%
Alien0.09%

In addition to species, each punk features a unique mix of facial accessories or “attributes”. Examples include a big beard (found in only 146 punks), and a VR headset (found in 332 punks).

Bored Ape Yacht Club

Next is the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), another collection of 10,000 unique profile picture NFTs. Unlike CryptoPunks, BAYC NFTs show both the head and torso of a character (in this case, an ape).

This opens up many combinations of clothing items, facial features, and accessories. Altogether, there are seven categories of attributes: Background color, Clothes, Earring, Eyes, Fur, Hat, and Mouth.

The following table lists some examples of BAYC attributes, and their % rarity. To explore further, visit the BAYC gallery.

Attribute CategoryAttribute Name% Rarity
FurSolid Gold0.05%
FurWhite3.9%
HatKing's Crown0.02%
HatStuntman Helmet1.6%

BAYC NFTs also grant access to members-only benefits. This includes access to a collaborative graffiti board, as well as other NFTs from spin-off collections like the Bored Ape Kennel Club (BAKC). As its name suggests, the BAKC is a collection of dogs, rather than apes.

Cool Cats NFT

The last collection is Cool Cats NFT, which again amounts to 10,000 images. Cool Cats were minted at a cost of 0.06 Ethereum each, or roughly $200. The act of “minting” an NFT is similar to when metal coins are entered into circulation.

Each Cool Cat NFT is a depiction of a cartoon cat with a varying number of facial features, hats, and shirts. Altogether, there are over 300,000 possible options that could be included.

This collection also features nine “hidden” cats which boast one-off features. #500 is an upside down cat floating in a blue sky background, while #2288 is simply a skeleton.

Building Your Identity in the Metaverse

A criticism of today’s social media is that there’s little room to express yourself.

Think back, for a moment, to the days of MySpace. Users could spend hours customizing their profile page, adding music, art, and whatever else they felt was an expression of themselves. As the platform’s name implied, it was a space that belonged to you.

The metaverse offers something similar. To take part in a virtual universe, you need an avatar—a digital manifestation of yourself. Avatars will be highly customizable and far less constrained by the limitations of the real world.

If you’re having trouble imagining this, check out VR Chat, a virtual reality game where players socialize as aliens, monsters, and other “interesting” beings.

This may help to explain the recent craze around profile picture NFTs. When the metaverse arrives, these NFTs could become a user’s avatar. After all, who wouldn’t want to have blue alien skin?

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Can Data Centers Be Sources of Sustainable Heat?

Data centers produce a staggering amount of heat, but what if instead of treating it as waste, we could harness it instead?

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Diagram showing how waste heat from data centers could be recaptured and recycled to provide sustainable heat in residential and commercial settings.

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The following content is sponsored by HIVE Digital

Can Data Centers Be Sources of Sustainable Heat?

Data centers support the modern technologies on which we rely, but also generate incredible amounts of heat as waste. 

And since computers tend to be very sensitive to heat, operators go to great lengths (and expense) to get rid of it, even relocating to countries with lower year-round average temperatures. But what if instead of letting all that heat disappear into thin air, we could harness it instead?

In this visualization, we’ve teamed up with HIVE Digital to see how data centers are evolving to recapture and recycle that energy.

How Much Heat Does a Data Center Produce?

To get an idea how much heat we’re talking about, let’s imagine a mid-sized cryptocurrency operation with 1,000 of the most energy-efficient mining rigs on the market today, the Antminer S21 Hydro. One of these rigs needs 5,360 watts of power, which over a year adds up to 47 MWh.

Multiply that by 1,000 and you end up with over 160 billion BTU, which is enough energy to heat over 4,600 U.S. homes for a year, or if it happens to be Oscar season, enough heat to pop 463,803 metric tons of popcorn. Less if you want melted butter on it. 

How Waste Heat Recycling Works?

At a high level, waste heat is recaptured and transferred via heat exchangers to district heating networks, for example, where it can be used to provide sustainable heat. Cool air is then returned to the data center and the cycle begins again.

Liquid cooling is by far the most efficient means of recapturing and transporting heat, since water can hold roughly four times as much heat as air.

Data centers around the world are already recycling their waste heat to farm trout in Norway, heat research facilities in the U.S., and to heat swimming pools in France.

A Greener Future for Data Centers?

Waste heat recycling has so far been voluntary, led by operators looking to put their operations on a more sustainable footing, but new regulations could change that. 

Amsterdam and Haarlemmermeer in the Netherlands require all new data centers to explore recycling their waste heat. In Norway, they require it for all new data centers above 2 MW, while Denmark has taken a carrot approach, and developed tax cuts and financial incentives. And in late 2023, the EU Energy Efficiency Directive came into force, which will require data centers to recycle waste heat, or show that recovery is technically or economically infeasible. 

With Europe leading the way, could North America be very far behind?

HIVE Digital Provides Sustainable Heat

HIVE Digital is already recycling waste heat from its data center operations in Canada and Sweden. 

Their 30 MW data center in Lachute, Québec, is heating a 200,000 sq. ft. factory, while their 32 MW data center in Boden, Sweden, is heating a 90,000 sq. ft. greenhouse, helping to provide sustainably grown local produce, just one degree short of the Arctic Circle.

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Learn how HIVE Digital is helping to meet the demands of emerging technologies like AI, sustainably.

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