Talking Tech - March 12:
A Federal Vaccine Finder is coming; Digital artwork sells for $69 million

The federal government is finally building a website to help people get vaccinated

Joe Biden announced this during his first prime-time address, saying that all Americans will be eligible for the vaccine from May. This is huge news, because the current vaccine finding process is TERRIBLE with each city and state government having their own system, in addition to the individual systems for each privately owned dispensing point like pharmacies. 

Beeple makes bank

A college of 5000 pieces of art by the artist Beeple was auctioned by Christies and sold for $69 million – making history as the first piece of digital art with a NFT to be auctioned by a major art house.

So what on earth is a NFT?

NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token – which in basic terms is an id or serial number for that exclusive thing. This exclusive thing is bought and sold on the blockchain, which transparently records who the current owner is. Just like bitcoin, also on the blockchain, there can only ever be one owner.

So when this digital art – effectively a digital file – was sold, what the buyer was actually buying was the guarantee that they were the sole owner of the authentic work. The digital file can be copied and shared.. but there can only be one owner of the original.

Many see the blockchain as the future of how we guarantee the purchases of digital assets are authentic, tracked and verified – if that’s a song, a GIF, a photo or any other digital file.


Paul Stenhouse is the Technology Contributor on Newstalk ZB’s ‘Saturday Morning with Jack Tame’.

Subscribe for free weekly updates on Spotify, Google Podcasts or Apple Podcasts.