Reviving Extinct Animals On-Chain: VeryLongAnimals Origin

Murasaki BV
6 min readApr 18, 2024

We’re excited to introduce VeryLongAnimals Origin, marking the culmination of a month-long development journey.

This experimental project aims to revive extinct animals on the blockchain, driven by a commitment to preserve biodiversity.

VeryLongAnimals Origin embodies the principles of Digital Matter Theory (DMT), ensuring that each animal generated is a full-on-chain UNAT (Unique Non-Arbitrary Token). With the development logic of VeryLongAnimals is inscribed into the blockchain itself, the continued existence of VLAO is ensured as long as the Bitcoin network operates.

(For those interested in learning more about NATs and DMT, we invite you to read our whitepaper, which provides detailed specifications and insights into our approach.)

Overview

This project draws inspiration from DMT theory.

When Kaprekar’s constant (6174) appears in the hash of a Bitcoin block, attributes and individual parameters are assigned to the extinct animal from other information in the block hash and is revived on the blockchain.

These patterns are referred to as elements. Here are the elements of this project:

<vlao.6174.0.element>

Let’s take the 14,896th Bitcoin Block as an example. The hash for this block is as follows:

0000000044bbf037700a69ce8e6415c2cc3afd61741064890c35751332b55f1d

Within the block hash, you can see the presence of Kaprekar’s constant, 6174. This allows us to generate an extinct animal through this hash.

And, utilizing the information from the block hash further, VLAO then uses the last 8 digits, ‘32b55f1d’, to determine the logic of generating the UNAT.

In this case, the UNAT represents a Giant Penguin (Pachydyptes) with the Spirit attribute derived from the last three digits.

A Breakdown of the Usage of Last 8 Digits within the Block Hash

Through this process, a total of 100 extinct animals will be faithfully reproduced on the blockchain, inscribed within the 580 block hashes that have ‘6174’ today.

From Inception to Launch

A History of Memes

“Meme” originates from Richard Dawkins’ book “The Selfish Gene” and derives from the Greek word “mimeme,” meaning imitation. Unlike the concept of “gene,” which pertains to genetic evolution, “meme” refers to cultural evolution, easily transmitted across generations regardless of genetic traits.

In essence, memes possess the ability to permeate through time and generations, evoking nostalgia akin to the Mona Lisa. Broadly speaking, language itself can be considered a form of meme.

VeryLong, initiated by artist Akim, is a meme project rooted in the narrative of “long.” We see this as a source of inspiration, and aim for VLAO to serve the same purpose.

The Creation of VeryLongAnimals Origin

Originally, the idea was to mint extinct animals as VeryLongAnimals and then donate them to an organization dedicated to saving endangered species.

However, a pivotal moment occurred in February of this year when Murasaki encountered Digital Matter Theory (DMT) through a chance encounter and a podcast called Blockrunner, which showcased NAT and DMT, introducing a representative project called Natcat.

The concept of generating a cat solely based on blockchain behavior, with all aspects recorded on-chain — fully decentralized, and embedding the entire generation logic into the blockchain for permanence, was exciting. Thus, the VeryLongAnimals Origin was started.

Sales Ideology

In the context of Ordinals projects, success typically stems from strong support from fair mints and OGs, bolstered by ensuing hype. However, this time, we want to prioritize technology selection that aligns with VLAO’s concepts, so shifting from the Ordinals narrative and culture was necessary. That said, we view VLAO as a triumph both creatively and ideologically, so it was released without excessive concern for the current trends in the space.

As initially planned, a portion of the proceeds (5%) will be directed to our partner, the 5W Foundation, to support the conservation efforts of existing endangered species.

Following the fair mint, Murasaki aims to utilize the funding diversely, channeling it towards various content creation endeavors such as establishing a team activity fund, creating VLAO collections of specific endangered species, developing a game, among others.

This strategy deviates from the sole emphasis on airdrops for subsequent projects, broadening the scope of impactful initiatives that will be supported.

Collection Details

Type / Age

The VeryLongAnimals Origin collection boasts 100 distinct animal species.

Illustrated in the accompanying figure, the last two digits dictate the appearance of each animal, each with a unique Chronicle ID.

Among the array of species, the collection spans from the ancient Dickinsonia, assigned number 1, to the modern Japanese otter, designated as number 100 in the age of extinction.

Dickinsonia, extinct over 500 million years ago (left) Japanese otter, extinct in 2012 (right)

Each animal is categorized into 20 geological ages of extinction, each assigned a background colour code.

The intensity of the orange colour deepens with age, visually representing the passage of time. This stratification makes it more distinct as well, as the older the age of extinction is, the more nuanced the appearance becomes.

(For more information, you can refer to the Epoch section in our whitepaper.)

Geological time is a concept that signify significant environmental changes in the environment, with the present era being the Meghalayan Period (2200 BC to present).

VeryLongAnimals Origin adapts this concept by categorizing extinct animals based on recent milestones, such as the era following Linnaeus, the founder of taxonomy, and the era following Darwin’s theory of evolution.

Attributes/Parameters

Following this, the final three digits determine the attribute. For instance, Dickinsonia, showcased above, possesses the Fire attribute, while the Japanese otter embodies the Water attribute.

Attributes of each UNAT, Fire (left), and Water (right)

Theoretical calculations suggest that there could be up to 1600 different image patterns, derived from the combination of 100 unique image patterns and hexadecimal numbers within the block hashes.

Here’s the previous image of the Giant Penguin as a refresher.

Giant Penguin

Starting from the last 4–8 digits, the other five parameters of the Giant Penguin are determined as 15, 15, 21, 12, and 13.

Only the last three digits affect the UNAT’s appearance, however, the other digits can serve to determine parameters for in game development and create value-added content.

Rarity and Price

The rarity of NATs correlates with their age of extinction, with older specimens being rarer and commanding higher prices upon launch. Essentially, the older it’s been extinct, the more difficult it is to revive it.

The rarity is categorized into three main tiers, determined by assigning 256 patterns of two-digit hexadecimal combinations (0–9, a-f) to each NAT in chronological order of Chronicle ID.

The older the age of the NAT, the smaller the number of assigned patterns.

For instance, Anomalocaris, being one of the oldest, has a mere 1/256 (approximately 0.4%) chance of appearing due to corresponding to only one pattern.

Rarity

Initial Listing Individuals and Prices

To date, there are only 580 blocks containing ‘6174’ in the block hash, so these 580 extinct animals were initially sold as UNATs. After that, anyone can inscribe from 581 bodies. Click here to see how.

The pricing for these UNATs is determined based on the 20 different geological ages described in the Type / Age section. The price of the oldest ID (#1) is set at 1 BTC, with an exponential decay of 0.75 for each additional ID. For more information, click here.

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Murasaki BV

Murasaki BV - A blockchain game & creative media studio that specializes in Japanese games, anime media, NFTs, and manga.