The firm behind legendary sci-fi series Star Trek, Roddenberry Entertainment, has immortalized a key moment in entertainment history — in a way that may in time become an equally iconic moment in blockchain history. Gene Roddenberry’s signature on the first contract between himself and Lucille Ball’s Desilu Productions, which made Star Trek a reality, has been turned into a “living Eco-non-fungible token,” according to a press release shared with Forkast.News.

Fast facts

  • Built on the Solana blockchain in what its developers believe to be a world first,  the NFT of the signature is implanted as DNA code into the cell of live bacteria, and it replicates and grows with the duplication of the organism’s cells. The project will be exhibited as an art piece entitled “El Primero” at Art Basel Miami Beach 2021, and as long as the bacteria remains living, the cell can double at a rate that will create over a billion copies of the Eco-NFT overnight.
  • “Storing information in DNA represents a whole new category of possibility when it comes to data archiving,” said Agustin Fernandez, CEO and founder of Rational Vaccines, one of the firms behind the project, in a statement. “It provides sustainable, environmentally-friendly storage with exponentially larger capacities than anything the market currently has to offer, as evidenced by the billions of copies our Eco-NFT in such a small amount of bacteria.”
  • Created and stored on organic material, developers claim the project is not only carbon neutral, but possibly carbon negative. The Solana blockchain itself is also quite an environmentally friendly blockchain; according to a recent report by Solana Labs, using just 1,837 joules of energy — just one transaction on the world’s fifth-largest network by market cap has the carbon footprint of just over two Google searches.
  • The first woman to run a major television studio, Lucille Ball was seen to be taking a risk on the now major cultural phenomenon when she signed the contract on May 18, 1965. Many years later — in 2021, the centenary of creator Gene Roddenberry’s birth — Star Trek films and television series are still being made, with another series, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, scheduled to premier next year.
  • Running from Dec. 2 to Dec. 4, Art Basel Miami Beach is a contemporary art exhibition, showcasing art from galleries from five continents. Another blockchain project making a splash at the exhibition this year is the Open Earth Foundation’s OceanDropNFT sale, which is selling NFT artworks in the form of holograms to raise funds to save the world’s oceans. Following from the project’s successful CarbonDropNFT sale earlier this year, which raised US$6.6 million, all proceeds will go toward a new project called OpenOcean (not to be confused with NFT platform OpenSea), which supports local non-government organizations and park ranger operations on Coco Island off the coast of Costa Rica.