CryptoKitties and CryptoPunks showed that there's a market for trading PURELY digital assets on the blockchain. With cryptography, we can now track ownership even more easily than we can track who owns a real physical item in real life.
What it does
Make your own crypto collectibles. This is a "nonfungible token-as-a-service"! Upload digital artwork (or just a simple set of images) that you want to tokenize on the Ethereum blockchain, add some settings and descriptions, and with one click plus a few Web3 confirmations you've got your own crypto collectible that you can sell or send to friends.
See EthDinos for an example of a mintable collectible that one of us just made.
How we built it
Truffle, IPFS, Ethereum, python for encryption, Open Sea for getting token liquidity
Challenges we ran into
Encryption is hard and so is passing an array of strings in Solidity... Also IPFS is slow, so we have to host a node for the demo.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Sleeping for 4 whole hours, and making CryptoPenguins and EthDinos as our first two collectibles
What we learned
IPFS, creating contracts programmatically, NuCypher for doing encryption
What's next for Crypto Collectibles
A library for choosing public-domain images to tokenize, along with trading and auctions via Open Sea (opensea.io)