Faroe Islands’ postal service launches weather-influenced NFT stamps

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Stock Photo – pbs.twimg.com

The Faroe Islands has announced weather-based digital stamps called the “Stamps of Maybe.” The NFT collection was launched through its postal service partnership with VariusSystems.

Posta Faroe Islands is the first Nordic Postal Service to embrace crypto stamps. It joined the ranks of pioneering postal services like the Austrian Post and the Netherlands. The territory itself has been famous for its postage stamps for almost half a century.

Stamps of Maybe aims to tap into the growing global interest in crypto stamp art. Each physical stamp has its own digital identical copy stored on the blockchain. They retain their functionality for franking purposes.

“Stamps of Maybe introduces oracle technology for the first time in stamp history,” said CEO of VariusSystems, Michael Dorner.

“This innovative approach allows users to interact and co-create their stamps, shaping the rarity of their collections. Furthermore, these NFT stamps serve as time capsules, preserving a precise moment in time.”

The Stamps of Maybe are connected to the Veðurstova Føroya, the Faroese Weather Station. The weather conditions in the Faroe Islands at the activation time affect how the islands’ digital twin will appear.

Each crypto stamp features a QR code and NFC chip, allowing users to activate and view the digital twin. The user can choose the activation time by doing it immediately or waiting a certain amount of time. This creates a “digital time capsule” that captures the user’s desired season on the stamp.

The Stamps of Maybe use real-time weather data to influence the appearance of the NFTs. This means that the rarity of each NFT is not predetermined. It is universally unique, and the stamp owner can shape its appearance. Upon scanning the stamp, a preview indicates the level the NFT would achieve if activated at that specific moment.

Seasons-themed design

The stamps were designed by Multi-artist Heiðrik á Heygum. The stamps feature artistically rendered picture collages or bouquets. Each one features flowers, plants, birds and/or animals.

The Spring stamp is connected to the wind strength in the Faroe Islands. The artist chose the lamb, the oystercatcher and the marsh marigold to depict the spring in the bouquet. During this time, the marigold, the national flower of the Faroe Islands, begins to bloom. The designs reflect the awakening of nature, symbolizing the victory of light over darkness.

The Summer stamp is linked to the temperature in the Faroe Islands. The summer bouquet showcases the vibrant greenery of the Faroe Islands. In this season, flowers like red clover and dandelions bloom.

It also features iconic birds, such as puffins and gannets, as well as a glimpse of a pilot whale. Calm breezes, luminous sunshine and shimmering seas characterize this season.

The Autumn stamp corresponds to the humidity level in the territory. The autumn bouquet represents the transition from summer to winter. As the grass in the field loses its vibrant color and migratory birds head south for the winter, it’s time for the harvest of potatoes and other crops.

The fall season is also when the sheep would be herded down from the mountains, leading them to the abattoir. The autumn bouquet features rams, mallards, mushrooms and fading leaves.

The final stamp, Winter, is connected to the rainfall in the Faroe Islands. The winter bouquet portrays the challenging Faroese winter, with elements like snow, wind and rain. It incorporates the mystical sight of the northern lights, a hare and a goose. The goose bit pays homage to the Faroe Islands’ tradition of keeping geese since ancient times.

The collection was Heygum’s first time designing crypto stamp art. He wanted to portray the Faroese culture while still coming up with something original and unique.

“Each stamp features its own distinctive bouquet, carefully crafted to encompass the flowers, plants, birds, and animals that symbolize the essence of each season on our islands,” he said. “Through these crypto stamps, I aimed to infuse the technological world with the rich tapestry of Faroese culture, uniting tradition and innovation in a visually captivating manner.”

“It is my hope that these stamps will not only serve as a means of postage but also as a testament to the profound connection we share with our environment and our commitment to preserving our unique traditions for generations to come.”

Getting with the times

With a history of pioneering technologies, VariusSystems and its parent company, The Varius Group, played a crucial role in the development of the project.

The family-owned conglomerate has been active since the 1970s. Its founder, Frank Dorner, pioneered the manufacturing of digital cards. These cards contained information on barcodes, magnetic stripes and a printed name and photo of the cardholder.

Dorner also invented the desktop card personalization machines. This revolutionized the market then and made the current collaboration possible.

After taking over the company in 2003, Frank’s son, Michael Dorner, immersed himself in emerging technologies. He particularly explores the application of blockchain for secure ID storage. This endeavor resulted in the development of crypto stamps.

Dorner found his way into NFT following his meetings with leaders of postal companies worldwide during the Universal Postal Union summit in Frankfurt under the United Nations.

“We observed a tremendous interest in not only NFT stamps but also in blockchain technology itself,” he said. “Countries from Iceland to Togo, Portugal to Singapore, are eager to understand how decentralized blockchains can fuel their business growth and keep them at the forefront of innovation.”

In its pursuit of extending its services beyond traditional mail, Faroe Islands’ Posta wanted to engage the younger generation and leverage technology.

Through its website and mobile app, customers can enjoy convenient access to multiple services. They include package tracking, pickup requests, and more.

The philately department at Posta has gained international acclaim for its stamp designs. The designs range from the famous textured fish skin stamps to ones featuring built-in QR codes. The engraved stamps feature captivating depictions of landscapes and cultural artifacts.

Building upon this rich legacy, the introduction of NFT stamps seamlessly integrates blockchain technology with the Faroese culture.

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