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Base Is Here, But Some of Its Projects Raise Red Flags

This week, Coinbase launched its new Base blockchain while DeGods NFTs are way up after the project announced its upcoming Season III series. Plus, Microsoft and Aptos are teaming up to launch new blockchain AI tools.

DeGods Season III art preview. (DeGods)

  • NFT collection Y00ts stirred controversy by announcing it would be migrating from Polygon to Ethereum after accepting a $3 million grant from Polygon earlier this year. At the same time, its sister project DeGods released a preview of the artwork for its Season III collection, leading to a boost in trading volume.
  • Meanwhile, Coinbase officially launched its Base blockchain and is celebrating with Onchain Summer, a multi-week series of Web3 activations across art, gaming and music with brand partners like Coca-Cola and Friends With Benefits. The biggest mover on Base so far though is the new app, but the project raises some red flags.

This Week’s Alpha

On God: Popular NFT collection DeGods saw its sales soar after sharing plans and teasing artwork for its 20,000-edition Season III collection. Within 24 hours of the announcement, trading volume increased nearly 200% while its floor price decreased. Notably, female-presenting NFTs will be added to the collection, which are swappable for male-presenting ones. To avoid dilution, each individual DeGod NFT will have four pieces of generative art associated with it.

  • Y00 too: In conjunction with the announcement of a new DeGods collection, sister project y00ts said that it would soon be migrating away from the Polygon blockchain and onto Ethereum. Project lead Rohun Vora, known as Frank, explained that the shift was meant to “unite the DeGods and y00ts communities” on the same blockchain to simplify the ecosystem. Notably, y00ts accepted a $3 million grant from Polygon to migrate to its chain earlier this year, though the NFT project said it would return 100% of the funding it received.

Hot chain Summer: Coinbase, the largest crypto exchange in the U.S., officially launched its Base blockchain after weeks of teasing the initiative. The new blockchain is a layer 2 built on top of Ethereum using stack software from another popular layer 2 network, Optimism, and already boasts over 100 compatible decentralized apps (dapps) within its ecosystem.

  • Non-fungible festival: In connection with the launch, Coinbase launched Onchain Summer, a multi-week series of Web3 activations across art, gaming and music with partners like Coca-Cola, social DAO Friends With Benefits and NFT minting platform Zora. In addition to branded NFTs, Coinbase is helping distribute over 100 ETH, or about $186,000, in grants for developers building on Base.
  • Friend or foe: Frenzied activity around a new app called drove daily active users to a record high of 136,000 on Base, but the app’s mysterious origins, lack of privacy policy and lagging network are red flags.

Aptitude test: Layer 1 blockchain Aptos, started by former Facebook employees to revive the scrapped Diem project, announced a partnership with Microsoft to expand its tools using Microsoft’s artificial intelligence technology. The tools combining blockchain technology and AI will be used to test and develop new offerings, including a new Aptos Assistant AI chatbot powered by OpenAI. In addition, the two companies have agreed to explore blockchain-based financial-service products, including asset tokenization, payment options and central bank digital currencies.

  • Token jump: The Aptos token got a 15% bump to $7.70 after the announcement was made.
  • AI ambitions: Blockchain and AI make natural partners in emerging markets, and venture capitalists are also shifting investments away from crypto and towards AI, which could encourage more tech startups to start integrating machine learning in order to lure investors.

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