NFT smart contract: Beginners guide to comprehending NFT contract

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PersonOutlineIconUPYO.comCalendarTodayIcon September 24, 2022AccessTimeIcon Mins Read
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The term smart contracts have been doing rounds since the advent of NFT in 2021. If you are an NFT enthusiast, understanding this terminology is necessary since it forms the basis of NFTs. Discover what smart contracts are and how to write them in this article.

What is an NFT smart contract?

NFT smart contracts are computer programs that overlook and control the transmission of digital assets (NFTs in this case) between buyer and seller under specific conditions. It exists on the blockchain and is enforced by code.

Simply put, it’s a digital contract where terms of agreement (between users) are coded in computer language. In other words, it is a sale agreement between the buyer and the NFT seller.

These are executed as per the developer’s instructions (code). This is because non-fungible token contracts are self-operating. This means that it can inspect if the requirements of the agreement are satisfied and implement the conditions without the need for any other intermediate entity.

The code allows the Blockchain network to save the information specified in an NFT transaction, which can be retrieved whenever needed. Furthermore, the NFT contract provides a safe haven for the data. It ascertains the saved data is unchangeable and transparent.

NFT Smart Contract

Smart contracts manage different activities like:

  • Affirming the right/proprietorship
  • Managing the portability
  • Storing the unique information of NFT

Apart from these standard functions, creators can add other details to smart contracts. It’s possible to add identity, additional rules about trading, and secure links to specific files. They can be used to cover other functionalities like handling royalty payments, etc.,

Note: Smart contracts permit to have permanent identification information

A simple NFT contract example

There are innumerable programming languages that help one to design non-fungible token contracts. These languages can be used on a blockchain network as it lets you develop code to execute smart contracts on them. You can find an example written in Solidity, one of the most prevalent NFT contract coding languages, below:

pragma solidity ^0.8.7;

contract MyContract {

constructor() public {

value = “My value”;

}

string public value;

function get() public view returns (string memory) {

return value;

}

function set(string memory _value) public {

value = _value;

}

}

Apart from Solidity, one can use Rust, JavaScript, Vyper, Yul, and other languages also. However, Solidity remains the preferred choice by many developers. It is developed based on Python, C++, and JavaScript.

Thus, developers who are proficient in the above languages may choose Solidity over others as it is easy to understand and develop the contract easily.

Solidity is the popular language that is employed for designing NFT-related contracts. This language is widely utilized in the market and is employed to build a broad range of apps (decentralized). It was created to write smart contracts on Ethereum. Moreover, similar to Java and the Java Virtual Machine, Solidity operates on the EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine).

nft contract

Benefits of Solidity:

  1. It provides those concepts that are used in the majority of modern programming languages, such as functions, variables, classes, and other features.
  2. It has a vast and easily accessible community. That is because Solidity was the first smart contract programming language and was created specifically for smart contract development on the Ethereum network. The widespread community makes it simple for new developers to seek assistance when they get stuck.
  3. It offers mapping data structures, which function as hash tables.
  4. Most of its syntax was derived from popular programming languages such as Python, C++, and JavaScript. As a result, one doesn’t need to spend more time learning Solidity if one knows to code in these languages.
  5. It is Turing-complete. It is not confined to running only a few algorithms. Thus, it can be used to compute any quantifiable function.

How do I get an NFT smart contract?

One can usually find NFT contracts on decentralized blockchains along with distributed networks. Developers code them in such a way that they self-execute when certain predefined conditions are met. Touted as a powerful feature of Blockchain technology, they propose a unified technique for developing applications across various sectors.

This potential has pushed numerous firms to develop non-fungible token contracts that stand up in court. It is more probable that smart contract interfaces will be developed, in which the code creates a document in English outlining the contract’s conditions at the same time.

How to write a smart contract NFT?

Creating or writing NFT contracts is done through minting. In other words, minting NFTs is nothing but writing the implicit smart contract in the background. Usually, the NFT contract code determines the NFT qualities to add them to a relevant blockchain.

Numerous NFT contract standards are in use today. However, ERC 721 and ERC 1155 Standard are the two prevalent ones. In fact, Ethereum was the early blockchain technology that employed these standards.

Following are the steps to create NFT smart contracts:

Prerequisites

Before writing smart contract code, one must have basic knowledge of smart contracts and how to work with them in dApp projects. Furthermore, they must have experience with Metamask and be familiar with public and private keys. Most importantly, having knowledge of Javascript, Solidity, and Node.js is viewed as helpful.

nft contracts
The chain with data. 3D illustration

Steps:

  • Project preparations: It is the first step is to prepare for the project and be ready for the initial tasks.
  • Install Hardhat: A framework is installed to deploy the code. For instance, Hardhat is an excellent example of development dependency.
  • Create files and directories: A contract directory must be created in the root folder where further contract files can be developed.
  • Develop smart contract: Creating smart contracts starts with specifying the pragma version, followed by other specification codes.

How much is an NFT smart contract?

The cost to implement an Ethereum based smart contract (ERC-721) can cost between $400 – $2,000. Please remember that the overall price depends on the prevailing gas costs. Ethereum is notorious for its expensive gas costs and other charges, so if you are looking for cheaper options, try exploring other options.

There are three significant factors that affect the overall price:

  • Units of gas that are used in the transaction to implement a smart contract
  • Price per gas based on the current market trends, traffic conditions, and network congestion
  • Value of Ether (ETH) based on current market rates

Finally, these three factors are used together to calculate the total cost of the smart contract:

TOTAL COST OF SMART CONTRACT = UNITS * PRICE * VALUE

Write smart contract

Conclusion

Overall, NFT smart contracts are an integral part of NFTs with extraordinary potential for future use cases. Since these contracts eliminate the need to have intermediaries, they can eliminate the lack of trust and bring transparency to the transaction. Transactions such as loans and other business transactions can immensely benefit from this technology to a great extent.

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