Mytho-Crypto 3.5: Feeling Overwhelmed?

Hello and welcome! I’m Greg, also known as Cryptoversal, and you’re reading the Mythoversal Cryptoversal Newsletter. You either subscribed or are receiving a forwarded copy from a friend—either way, I’m glad to have you in the Cryptoversal community.

Too Much to Learn

I was talking to an author this week who was making the shift from traditional publishing into Web3, and she was feeling overwhelmed with all that she needed to learn about formats, platforms, and file storage.

Does it get easier with time?


Do you ever get to a point where you feel like you know everything?

No, or at least not for me. I've been at this for a while now, and I'm still learning new things every week.

The Challenges

Sometimes we have learn and relearn the same things in multiple ways, especially lessons of dense and arcane technologies. Those of us without a computer science background may first encounter simple analogies we can use to “kinda-sorta” wrap our heads around.

The blockchain is like an immutable ledger, we are told, creating the mental image of a fat leather tome written in indelible ink.

That working definition can take us a long way. With it, we can understand that blockchain transactions are recorded for everyone to see and can’t be undone, making it possible for authors to track sales in real time and to identify and reward our readers.

But then, inevitably, we encounter a situation where the simple analogy breaks down. Physical ledgers don’t include executable code. Physical ledgers don’t need a team of validators to ensure accuracy of the data. Physical ledgers don’t require us to pay gas fees. And physical ledgers certainly can’t fork into a pair of near-identical ledgers with competing entries.

To be fully informed, we eventually need to expand our basic understanding with more detail.

Or sometimes we learn new things because news of an interesting project takes a while to reach you through the fog of noise. TIME Magazine was a pioneer in the Web3 publishing space. They created some of the earliest experiments in Web3 magazines, and also this fun animated cover that I found just this morning while researching this week’s Mytho-Crypto.

Alt tag: TIME Magazine cover of a girl in a cat-eared hoodie, ray-gun mounted on her head, riding a rocket-powered yacht across the harbor of a futuristic city. That’s right. I own this now. No apologies.

I knew they were in the space. But I didn’t know until this week that TIME was also publishing books, and in late January put out a 25th Anniversary Edition of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra, with cover art variants by 73 artists.

Alt tag: Cover of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, 25th Anniversary NFT Edition by Deepak Chopra. Ask me my opinion of the production values sometime.

This is a bestselling book from a well-known author, from a publisher with an enormous platform and international reach. And yet I, as a person who is especially attuned to the Web3 publishing space, didn’t hear about the release until after it had already happened.

Another project I only just learned about this week is The Minthouse, a generative picture book for parents to introduce their children, and perhaps themselves, to basic Web3 concepts. Each copy of the book tells the same story, but with generative illustrations that provide a variety of character traits and background elements, ensuring that every resultant book is one of a kind.

Alt tag: Three versions of the same page from an illustrated picture book with very different generative characters and background elements.

I haven’t read the book yet, but these examples of variant illustrations certainly look like they were crafted with care and attention to detail.

Again, I have a background in children’s books, I’m attuned to the Web3 publishing space, and have only just this week stumbled upon a Web3 children’s book project that’s apparently been building for over a year.

And then sometimes, there’s much to learn because the technologies are evolving so fast, especially when it comes to AI and the tools that Web3 authors can use to assist us in our work. This week I found an AI art program that can fix some of the mistakes in an image you upload into it from another AI art program. So useful!

Growing Pains

It’s only natural for us to feel overwhelmed in a space with unexplored corners, hidden depths, and where the ground is always shifting under our feet.

But I feel energized by learning new things, acquiring new skills, finding new inspirations, and trying new things I’ve never been able to do before. All of this is possible in the Web3 publishing space.

And now, at least, you know that when you’re feeling stressed there’s a decentralized flipbook of Deepak Chopra’s meditation techniques to help you stay centered. And if you need blockchain concepts explained on the most basic possible level, there’s a picture book for that.

What Am I Working On?

No video this week but exciting news is on the way for holders of the Wordler Vignettes in my Samhain 2022 storyline and the tokens in my Year in the Books collection. Follow me on Twitter or join my Discord for details.

--Greg R. Fishbone, the Mythoversal Cryptoversal

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