Hic Et Nunc — the story, facts, suppositions and ideas (June 2021)

1. Rafael Lima and Hic Et Nunc as a social experiment

  • Blockchain’s inherently characteristic of being uncensorable and transparent.
  • Apply these characteristics into governance experiments.
  • The importance of liminal spaces for experimentation in art.
  • Self-sustaining creative economies.
  • Web 3.0 platforms and user freedom. Create a space were the user is fully the owner of all his data.
  • Uncensorable and transparent = Smart contracts once written are permanent (will get back to this in the next topic). Everyone can interact and there’s no way on the contract-level to ban or remove someone from minting. On a platform level there’s is no curation whatsoever. The audience sees everything that is being minted, be it the shittiest art or the most famous artist in the planet. They all have the same space and relevance on the website. With the rise of copyminters an exception has been made to ban and hide these users from the user interface although they still exist and will always exist on the contract level.
  • Governance experiments= the token hDAO was created and distributed during the first 45 days of the website for everyone that either sold or bought artworks. This token was planned to give voting power to whoever holds it on the future decisions of Hic Et Nunc through a DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization). Although it was planned and designed to help decentralize decisions till this date (June 2021) a fully functional DAO has not been implemented yet.
  • Liminal spaces= I firmly believe that choosing Tezos as the blockchain is greatly in part to this notion of liminality. Would you be more comfortable going to a gala party where you have to watch every rule of etiquette or going to a underground party where everything goes? It’s not a coincidence that many have compared HEN to Berghain. Moreover my cheap analogy, being a liminal space also opens the doors and lower the barriers to people who were either financially or culturally excluded in the larger NFT platforms.
  • Self-sustaining creative economies= Low platform fees + high royalties (10% as minimum) is a god send for every artist and a political statement in itself as it clearly sends a message to collectors on the value of the artists work.
  • web3 platforms and user freedom= Many complain about not having an integrated profile option but on the flipside HEN doesn’t collect or save any data on its users. I mean, literally ANYTHING! All the artwork files are saved o the publicly accessible IPFS and all the profile information is managed by 3rd sources or saved straight on the blockchain. Have you ever wondered how cool is it that Hic Et Nunc never shows that annoying pop-up message about accepting cookies?! Yep… That’s by design. Nothing of yours is being recorded or saved. You’re fully the owner of all your data.

2. Unaudited what? Who cares about smart contracts.

This is a more technical part so bear with me before returning to HEN. Smart contracts first appeared in the 2014 Ethereum whitepaper and till this day many still struggle, comprehensibly, to understand what is so smart about it — “You can run a very basic app on the blockchain and have to pay money for any interaction you do?! Why not use your own server and do it for cheaper and faster? Now that’s smart!”

Footnote that greets you every time you click on the menu at hicetnunc.xyz.
  • User’s are able to mint, swap, transfer and giveaway NFTs
  • OBJKTs will contain CIDs that link to IPFS (this is how a string of text on the blockchain can show the media in the UI).
  • Limit of 10000 units of OBJKTs per mint.
  • 2.5% fee
  • hDAO tokens distribution
How I learned to stop worrying about contracts and love the hack

3. The tight rope between centralizing and decentralizing.

  • Funds are controlled by Rafael Lima. Same wallet also launched the smart contracts.
  • Hicetnunc’s Github is controlled by Rafael, any pull requests or push commits needs to be approved by him. In other words, any changes to the website.
  • The Github is publicly available and anyone can fork it and create their own UI. Anyone can also submit pull requests for new features or fixes through Github (although it will have to approved by Rafael).
  • The smart contracts are also available on Github making it easier to see how it works, submit pull requests or even fork it. Due to blockchain nature it would be available anyways on the blockchain, but having it properly marked and easier to submit improvements on Github is a lot faster.
  • Anyone can interact with the smart contracts and create amazing tools or even full platforms that are built on top of this framework (objkt.bid, hicdex.com, hictory, NFT Biker tools, etc.)
  • Fixed collaborators. There is a small group of known artists, developers and coders that have been working with Hic Et Nunc and doing many upgrades on the platform. All of their work though has to be approved and pushed to the main site by Rafael. They also have been paid (very) small amounts from the Hic Et Nunc wallet.
  • Communications. There are a few collaborators working on the Twitter, Discord, Instagram but its unclear how many as it seems understaffed regarding the lack of proper communications in critical moments.
  • Hicathon. Although the idea was developed in a completely decentralized manner (thanks to the amazing organization by Micol on Vertical Crypto Art and many others) and dozens of people from all around the world came together few results from the work groups were taken further into the production website by Rafael. In all fairness, some work groups objectives didn’t directly involve changes to the website and many work groups did a great job in showing realistic possible futures for the platform.
  • hDAO supposedly will bring governance to make HEN a Decentralized Autonomous Organization but it’s still in its baby steps using Homebase as an interface. Hope that on my next write-up it’s successfully up and running.



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