SPOTLIGHT: BokkyPooBah Was The First Person To Mint A CryptoPunk In 2017. The Full Story Here:
Collecting, creating, and crypto are three words that define the first person outside the Larva Labs team to ever mint a CryptoPunk.
BokkyPooBah, who previously worked as a consultant in the tradfi software space, is a legend in the Web3 community for his now brilliant decision to mint some CryptoPunks 10 hours and 26 minutes after Larva Labs launched its pixel project on June 9, 2017, during an Ethereum workshop event he was hosting.
“I ran a workshop, and looked for newly deployed smart contracts and used them as exercises + teaching materials,” BokkyPooBah told the Gazette. “So, I got workshop attendees to mint some CryptoPunks. I thought I would not claim many, to leave them for others. I should have known better.”
The first CryptoPunk that BokkyPooBah minted was CryptoPunk #3983 because it resonated with him.
“The CryptoPunks app was very confusing to use when claiming - image spills over the screen,” BokkyPooBah said. “#3983 caught my eye and I like the nerdy glasses, since this is representative of this profession.”
BokkyPooBah first found out about crypto from his colleagues in the Tradfi - or traditional finance - space. In 2015, BokkyPooBah was first introduced to Bitcoin but was not instantly hooked on the blockchain.
“Someone in the Tradfi space gave a talk about how Bitcoin has created a trusted platform out of many untrusted computers,” he said. “I looked into the space, could not do much with Bitcoin.”
While BokkyPooBah couldn’t build on the blockchain yet, his thoughts on crypto changed when he found out about Ethereum.
“Ethereum then launched, and I had to keep researching, as it provided a platform for developers to run programs permissionlessly, forever,” he explained. “ I Worked in the Tradfi software space, and saw the many successful software vendors selling to Tradfi, and the shortage of expertise in integration caused a bottleneck. So when I decided to jump into the Ethereum bandwagon, I thought that I would self-appoint myself into a role of building up the developer space. So I started BokkyPooBah's Ethereum Workshop in 2017.”
It was at one of his BokkyPooBah's Ethereum Workshops that he and the attendees were the first people to mint CryptoPunks.
Getting into Ethereum and CryptoPunks early has given BokkyPooBah the freedom to focus on the things he enjoys.
“I keep my spending to a minimum. Drive old cars, don't feel the need to do anything too expensive, he said. “When I found crypto and jumped into it full time in Sep 2017, I had a few years of runway. Have been lucky that NFTs have some historical value, as it gives me more runway to do things I want to do.”
Some of the things that crypto has given BokkyPooBah the freedom to pursue is his interest in fossils and building the Ethereum ecosystem.
Over the years, BokkyPooBah has volunteered on dinosaur digs in Australia and he even enrolled in postgraduate school to study paleontology; but, he quit halfway due to his overwhelming interest in the crypto space.
As CryptoPunks celebrate their sixth anniversary today, BokkyPooBah told the Gazette that CryptoPunks and crypto in general has the potential to be the fossils of the internet age.
“Humans will keep going for millions and billions of years, maybe, but they will keep a historical archive of this period when humans first learnt how to implement digital ownership on a public permissionless database,” he said. “They will spread across the universe, maybe. And take copies of the digital archive from this special period in history just like us currently looking at the writing in one of the pyramids from a long time ago, I think these are very historically significant. Don't know how the market will value these in the short/medium term. I just sell when I have to sell.”
Six years after the CryptoPunks initial mint, BokkyPooBah still holds six CryptoPunks including three zombies and is continuing to build in the Web3 space.
Along with holding six CryptoPunks, BokkyPooBah also told the Gazette that he loves supporting artists and that he believes that we are still early.
“One reason why I have many NFTs is because I spent my ETH supporting artist. I even have some where I'm the only minter. Most don't have any value, but again, I think these are (still early) in this technical revolution. So my ‘portfolio’ is 99% NFTs.”