Codex Quarterly Product Review: Q2 2019
Get an inside look at all of the product updates from Q2 (and a sneak peek at what’s coming up next) in our quarterly product review article.
This quarter we took a momentous step and began registering art and collectibles sold through Auction Mobility auction houses. Auction Mobility is a software provider of hundreds of auction houses in 22 countries, and one of our consortium partners.
We launched a mainnet account for Auction Mobility, which custodies accounts for their auction house clients. We began by registering items sold through a select number of auction houses, but will be increasingly adding more items to the Codex Registry on a steady basis. Hundreds of thousands of items are sold through Auction Mobility auction houses every year, which helps us as we progress towards our objective to make the Codex Registry one of the most robust and comprehensive registries of art and collectibles.
Featured Collection Update
With the Q2 spike in usage and interest, we have had an opportunity to work with these artists, gallerists and collectors using the platform to respond with specific new and improving features requested to us via feedback.
Design — We updated the design of the feature overall. The collections are filled with attractive images of collectibles, and we wanted to design the galleries to match the aesthetic quality of the images inside of them. Additions like a moving carousel of Codex Records at the top of each page and pagination so that images don’t load sporadically and slowly.
Communication Tools — To promote engagement and communication for our users, we designed a “title box” that sits at the top of each featured collection’s page that links to the account owner’s website and social media accounts. We also added a contact button; users can now contact the collection owners directly through a “contact” button in each collection.
Badging — A verified checkmark badge will appear next to the user’s name in the provenance of Codex Records. These users have been verified by Codex and will help differentiate them from general users. Codex Records now have different icons to differentiate the kind of account they are made in. Star icons on a Record indicate the Record is from a Featured Collection and house icons indicate the Record is from an auction house account.
A great use case of the Featured Collections platform this quarter came from world renowned artist Lans King, who leveraged the feature and the Registry to launch the first art project on Codex. King flew to Sweden to have an NFD chip surgically inserted into his hand that was encoded with a specific blockchain address and registered the code on to a single Codex Record. This line of code, registered exclusively in King’s Featured Collection on Codex, will be included in all of his future works.
Updates to Codex Records
Codex Records are one of the easiest and most secure ways to register an asset onto the blockchain, and we made some updates this quarter to make them even more functional and useful. (For a detailed look at all the updates to Codex Records, read the article linked here.)
Full screen viewing — Codex Records can now be viewed, and scrolled through, in full screen. This feature is critical for artists using the featured collection who want users to view and buy their art. Full screen viewing is also compatible on mobile.
Adding images and files — Users can now add multiple images to a Codex Record, either displaying all angles of an asset or photos that support the provenance of the asset. We also added the ability to upload multiple files such as audio, video and pdfs. This is crucial in making Codex Records the most effective and comprehensive way to store all provenance data about an asset onto the blockchain. Additionally, users can change the privacy settings of the files, so a public Codex Record can have private files.
We are currently working on a large set of updates to Codex Records that include editioning, album organization within collections, tagging, attestations and more. Stay tuned for those updates, we will be releasing more information soon.
Verified Accounts updates
Users that pass the application process and receive a verified account status are automatically qualified to have a public Featured Collection. All auction houses that come on to the platform through Auction Mobility are automatically verified. Even after Records are transferred to new owners, the Provenance of a Record will reflect the Record’s legitimate creation by the auction house.
Certificates of Authenticity
Upon request, we can issue a certificate of authenticity to our verified users for any of their Codex Records. Certificates of authenticity link to a specific Codex Record, giving the user a physical document to show they own a Record.
Our first certificate this quarter was issued to photographer and verified user Jacques Burga.
In Q3 we plan to make this a new offering on the marketing site. While we work with Tagsmart to form the best practices for our partnership, we want to offer our users some form of documentation or certification to accompany their Records. We believe Tagsmart offers the best solution for physical to digital tagging and certification, but want to offer our users a temporary option until our partnership takes effect.
Optimizations / SEO
We undertook a major upgrade to the overall Viewer, in that we rewrote most of the code for the Codex Viewer to derive substantial SEO and speed improvements. Re-writing the Viewer reduced the overall codebase of the site to make the application load faster and run more efficiently. The Viewer is now powered by Server Side Rendering; using SSR will lead to a large SEO boost, better UX and more opportunities compared to our previous application (learn more about Nuxt here). With SSR, our application is pre-rendered with the necessary data on the server and sent to the user’s browser, rather than initializing and loading all data on the browser.
The user (and Google’s indexing scripts) will see information immediately on the page rather than waiting for data, API web requests, etc to load. For example, after optimizations, the homepage runs 25% faster with 33% less data loading.
Next quarter we will continue to focus on growing the Codex Registry with our auction house partners to make it one of the most robust and comprehensive registries of art and collectibles. We’re confident that our continued work with our auction house partners and our upcoming integration schedule will make Q3 one of the most noteworthy quarters for Codex and the Registry.
As we grow the Registry, we want to make it easy to search and find Records to research the provenance of an item. In order to achieve that objective, we’ll spend development resources creating robust search options. Complementary to the search features, we will be expanding the functionality of Codex Records, accommodating new features such as editioning, curation of records into Albums and physical/digital security tagging.
Creating a link from the digital Record to a physical item is an important concept to tackle, and we have ongoing work with our partners at Tagsmart to form the best solution for both Codex and Tagsmart clients. We hope to have a working flow for our users in Q3.
Codex is the leading decentralized asset registry for the $2 trillion arts & collectibles (“A&C”) ecosystem, which includes art, fine wine, collectible cars, antiques, decorative arts, coins, watches, jewelry, and more. Powered by the CodexCoin native token, the Codex Protocol is open source, allowing third-party players in the A&C ecosystem to build applications and utilize the title system. Codex’s landmark application, Biddable, is a title-escrow system built on the Codex Protocol, which solves long-standing challenges in auctions: non-performing bidders, lack of privacy and bidder access. The Codex Protocol and CodexCoin will be adopted as the only cryptocurrency by The Codex Consortium, a group of major stakeholders in the A&C space who facilitate over $6 Billion in sales to millions of bidders across tens of thousands of auctions from 5,000 auction houses in over 50 countries.