Ordinals Brings NFTs to Bitcoin, Sparking Debate on Network Impacts

• Ordinals is a new project on the Bitcoin network, enabling on-chain NFTs.
• The protocol assigns individual satoshis a number and enables content to be inscribed in Bitcoin transactions.
• Debate has arisen surrounding the potential usage of block space and bandwidth necessary to run nodes as a result of inscriptions.

What is Ordinals?

Ordinals is a project launched on the Bitcoin blockchain, effectively enabling Bitcoin-native on-chain NFTs. Led by former Bitcoin Core contributor Casey Rodarmor, the protocol is a convention for numbering and transferring individual satoshis on the Bitcoin network.

What is Ord?

Ord, an implementation of Ordinals, is a wallet and explorer that allows tracking the location of specific satoshis and their ordinal numbers – assigned by the Ordinals protocol – as well viewing, creating, and transferring inscriptions, that is, individual satoshis inscribed with arbitrary content.

Benefits Of Inscriptions

The introduction of Ord and inscriptions brings NFTs to Bitcoin, allowing content such as images, videos and HTML to be included in a Bitcoin transaction and assigned to an individual satoshi. Inscriptions inherit the simplicity, immutability security and durability of Bitcoin itself.

Debate Around Block Space Usage

Since its release, there has been debate in regards to the impact of ordinals and inscriptions on Bitcoin regarding potential usage of block space and increase in bandwidth necessary to run nodes as a result of inscriptions. Supporters see it as net benefit for Bitcoin while critics express concern about censor resistance.

Ongoing Development Unphased

Regardless of debate around the project, “the Ordinals project continues unphased,” reads the press release,” with contributors continuing to add new features such as provenance collections composability and decentralized marketplace.”