Helping researchers take ownership of their ideas without making it public using Solana and NFTs.

The problem PatentNFT solves

Suppose you are a researcher and have an idea. But you don't want to make your idea public yet. You want to prove the world that this idea was your brainchild without making it public. In future when you do make it public, you want to prove everyone that this idea was actually devised by you back in time - not at the time of you making it public. To solve this problem, we introduce PatentNFTs - editable NFTs which are first private and only hold the cryptographic commitment of the idea. Then whenever the owner wants, they can make the NFT public by uploading the actual data to the blockchain in plaintext. Security of the commitment schemes ensure two things -

  1. when NFT is in private mode, other people cannot form the original idea from just the commitment.
  2. when the owner wants to make idea public, the owner cannot cheat and upload a different idea.

Challenges we ran into

Rust is a language which can never let you write bad code - it is something we didn't have much experience in.