The INV4 Protocol: The Core of the Creator Economy.

12 min readNov 22, 2022


The INV4 Protocol is what powers the foundation of the creator economy & the InvArch Network, producing what are essentially stem cells for defining & organizing NFT-based structures for intellectual property & decentralized organizations.

The protocol is intentionally designed to be broadly utilized by additional protocols, focusing on acting as an interoperable technical lego set for cross-chain dApp development. INV4 Assets are designed to act akin to general-purpose & programmable building blocks for structuring tokenized IP & decentralized organizations as on-chain primitives. Additionally, INV4 Assets can feature trustless & customizable rulesets that define & enforce immutable licensing terms, governance rights, treasury models, and royalty agreements.

While INV4 Assets embody an array of multiple various primitives, they can be interacted with and operate as a singular primitive or asset. The INV4 Protocol is designed so that its NFT-based primitives are interoperable across numerous ecosystems as transferable & composable assets. Better yet, external smart contracts & parachain pallets can execute trustless cross-chain transactions & function calls. This allows INV4 Assets to be true single-instance primitives that only store their metadata, state, & rulesets on one blockchain, unlocking the ability for developers across other networks to deploy smart contracts & build decentralized applications (dApps) that incorporate the INV4 Protocol & its assets as if they were native runtime components of the external chain they deploying. The INV4 Protocol may also be used with several external protocols, combined under a modular system, to build customized & decentralized fat-clients for cross-protocol powered graphical user interfaces (GUIs).

Compared to terminology which referenced InvArch Network assets as “IP Assets” in past documentation, several naming conventions have changed. Rather than IP Assets (IP Sets, IP Licenses, IP Tokens), the prefix “INV” has been implemented to replace the original “IP” prefix.

Several key components comprise the main primitive produced by the INV4 protocol. First, there is a parent, or root, NFT known as an INV-Core. An INV-Core consists of one or more collections of assets called an INV-Set. The contents of an INV-Set may feature any combination of INV-Sets (child collections or: INV-Subsets), bridged NFTs from external environments, & native, multi-resource, & composable NFTs, sometimes referred to as NFT 2.0 technology. Pegged to an INV-Core is one or more INV-Licenses, which includes at least one unique class of utility-specific & fungible tokens called INV-Tokens. An INV-Core is also capable of featuring a native INV-Treasury or a network of multi-layered sub-treasuries throughout itself. A Core Treasury may consist of its own native INV-Tokens, external INV-Tokens originating from different INV-Cores, plus all standards or integrated implementations of cryptocurrencies (Substrate-native & ERC-20 standard tokens) from all across the multi-chain web3 system.

INV-Cores — An INV-Core is the equivalent of a root repository or a root folder in a tree-directory file structure and consists of other INV4 primitives inside & attached to them. Furthermore, the INV4 protocol is not only designed to mint new NFT-based assets as INV4 primitives but it is also designed to act as an interoperable wrapper around varying standards of pre-existing NFTs which extends the utility of the INV4 protocol to those assets.

Similar to the Git file management & version control protocol, an INV-Core should be seen as the repository itself; otherwise understood as the root folder or project folder. It is through an INV-Core that organizational structures are viewed, NFT & treasury assets are owned, and rulesets are configured & managed. INV-Cores can be a gateway to modular NFT structures, decentralized version control, multi-signature solutions, & modular DAO frameworks.

They are designed so that they feature at least two unique identifiers. One ID is similar to an on-chain account ID that a smart contract possesses & another ID is similar to an on-chain asset ID that helps define an NFT and invites the general functionality that both identifiers normally mean for both smart contracts & non-fungibles, respectively. This allows an INV-Core to be deployed as a non-fungible asset that is not only able to be composed by smart contracts but also to execute function calls on smart contracts as if it were a smart contract itself. Additionally, the INV4 protocol is designed to support trustless cross-chain transactions. So, unlike other primitives throughout Web3’s brief history, INV4 Assets can be used to execute functions, own assets, and operate just as a physical user would typically be able to operate across other blockchains & their respective protocols, while INV4 primitives remain as singular instances on their native chain.

INV-Sets — Designed to emulate the role of folders in the Web2 file-management system, INV-Sets are collections of NFTs & possibly even of other INV-Sets. The NFTs can be native INV-Files and/or bridged NFTs & bridged NFT collections. When an INV-Set exists within another INV-Set, the higher-level INV-Set, which possesses another INV-Set, is considered the parent primitive. An INV-Set that resides inside a parent primitive is known as an INV-Subset & can feature a hypothetical hierarchy of infinite multi-layered organizational structures. INV-Sets are designed in tandem with RMRK 2.0 NFTs to provide a level of asset composability that is unhindered as an organizational tool & can emulate the same levels of composability as files in the native Git protocol.

NFT 2.0 — These enhanced non-fungible tokens are NFTs, either standalone NFTs or composable, multi-resource, & nested NFTs. The former is designed to produce a record linking a creator to a file that has been stored on-chain as an INV4 Asset & is used as either a component of an INV-Set or to be utilized in decentralized applications. The latter of the two, what is truly considered NFT 2.0 technology, is powered by the RMRK Protocol to enhance the native functionality, composability, & overall development possibilities using these NFT assets within INV-Sets; it is important to note that these NFTs can own & equip other NFTs, extending the internal composability of INV-Sets and all INV4 Assets.

INV-Licenses — Embedded into every INV-Core is an INV-License, which establishes a trustless ruleset environment over the INV4-Asset. A trustless ruleset environment is a mapping between an INV4 Asset’s executable functions & its multi-class fungible tokens that provide the access rights to execute whichever respective function(s) they are linked with. INV-Licenses do not feature the ability to trustlessly execute business logic or smart contracts that regulate the conditions of a ruleset environment. Instead, INV-Licenses define the permissions & access rights as native features of their assets, in addition to customizable parameters & tokenless options, smart contracts can build around INV4 primitives.

INV-Licenses can be extraordinarily basic, only defining a single token that provides full-use rights or even omitted from the minting process altogether and made so that every or any function can be executed without the need for fungible tokens at all; however, they can also be extraordinarily powerful. Trustless ruleset environments are a stateless & non-computation-intensive solution that provides transparent, trustless, & embedded protection over the specific use rights of an asset. These ruleset environments can also have metered & conditional execution parameters defined.

INV-Licenses could also be used to define & deploy decentralized autonomous governance systems over INV4 Assets as if INV4 Assets were a framework for DAOs. While the range of possibilities is broad & likely barely discovered, it is important to note that trustless ruleset environments can be used to define NFT-native or in-DAO reputation & ranking (i.e., leveling) systems built into an INV4 Asset through its INV-License. However, true creative freedom will likely come from trustless execution environments & dApps that are deployed using a combination of custom business logic & lucrative ruleset models.

INV-Licenses are ultimately trustless rulesets, defined as an actual attribute of an asset or organization; however, Smart License (which will be explored in a later paper) are what will take things to new heights. Smart Licenses will explicitly outline separable use-rights regarding the content of their INV-Core & its assets, establish trustless financial & royalty agreements between multiple parties, and trustless enforce & facilitate the allocation of split royalties across the InvArch Network!

INV-Tokens — While INV-Tokens can bring fungible characteristics toward otherwise non-fungible assets, they are quite possibly the most powerful innovation made in the field of fungible primitives since the introduction of the ERC-20 token standard. Their primary novelty is their multi-class utility which can be uniquely defined over an NFT enhanced by the INV4 protocol and can see multiple bodies of different utility tokens pegged to a single INV4 asset.

In a basic example, INV-Tokens can be understood in the same sense that there are class A & class B stock options; one provides ownership rights, whereas the other provides voting rights. However, blockchain technology allows us not just to emulate current real-world models but also to redefine them altogether. INV-Tokens, or an INVT for short, can take the form of any utility ranging from an asset representing ownership (ARO) or gated access rights token to soulbound experience points or even a stacking bonus multiplier within DAO incentive models. Perhaps what is most important is that they can, utilizing either natively in a trustless ruleset environment or by off-chain smart contracts in a trustless execution environment, extend the rights & trustlessly enforce the limitations of IP licensing agreements over INV4 assets.

One of the most powerful & immediately practical use cases for INV-Tokens is the solutions they realize for DAOs & multi-layer governance. As a feature of INV4 assets, multi-class INVTs complement the composable functionality of the INV-Sets & realize an extremely modular framework for defining the organizational structure of a DAO, practicing multi-layer & specialized decentralized governance, and constructing critical models such as incentivized open-source systems, evolvable & customizable multi-signature solutions, and networks of INV-Treasury systems. An entire article dedicated to INV-Tokens would be needed to truly scrape the surface of their applications.

INV-Treasuries — Each INV-Set, which includes the INV-Core as the highest-order INV-Set in a given INV4 Asset, can feature its native treasury. While this is a default feature of INV-Cores, it is made to be an optional feature for child INV-Sets. This allows any INV-Set primitive to possess its on-chain account & wield its own wallet. These are multi-signature wallets by default; however, they can be tailored to serve a single owner or a multi-layered organization’s potential signers.

Combining the architecture of INV-Treasuries with the innovation of multi-class fungible tokens ( INV Tokens) allows a truly modular, scalable, & adaptable multi-signature experience that can be provided as native features NFTs on the network. INV-Tokens make it possible to develop seamless wallet recovery processes in tandem with a secure means to remove a signer from a wallet & add new signers as well, which is a key feature for DAOs if they are ever to scale or experience membership changes. Lastly, INV-Tokens can be programmed to define unique governing bodies & voting groups to manage treasuries within a DAO or over an NFT.

The idea behind the INV-Treasury mechanics is to achieve two ultimate goals:

  • The first is to provide the possibility for on-chain assets & projects to have maintenance treasuries or even sub-treasuries for specific bounty initiatives.
  • The second is to allow NFTs throughout the INV4 Protocol to function as truly decentralized autonomous organizations; it is important for individual pods in any given organization to have their own, for example, sub-treasury that compensates their ability to act as an autonomous pod within its organization.

As with many aspects of the INV4 protocol, INV-Treasuries can be utilized for a hypothetical array of development possibilities outside of what’s already been mentioned in this paper.

INVisioning the Future

The INV4 protocol will be the core that powers many innovative solutions for creators & organizations. The INV4 protocol, similar in nature to smart contracts, unleashes a new world of use-cases far beyond the original intentions of the protocol. INV-Cores are deployed on-chain as their own sovereign entities or constructs, which can be used to organize, manage, & govern the assets & systems housed within them.

GitArch — Using the INV4 protocol, in addition to the INV4-Git middleware developed by the InvArch Network team, allows developers to store their code as NFT assets stored inside an INV-Core; the INV-Core acts as the root folder of the repository. Codebases will be able to be managed as DAOs, integrate maintenance treasuries & bounty systems, and allow developers to open-source their code under a protected economic system. For those who are still in love with current solutions such as GitHub or GitLab, the ability to use GitArch as a decentralized & censorship-proof backup for repositories, backing up code in tandem as code is pushed to GitHub — just in case the centralized powers at be decide to take action against a developer or censor a codebase, a secure backup will exist on the InvArch Network.

Saturn — The INV4 protocol provides a fluid & flexible structure that can accommodate the needs of many applications, whether it be asset ownership & IP attribution or even organization framing & governance models. However, one of the natural features that the protocol provides across both of the examples mentioned above is its advanced multi-signature ownership functionality. Saturn is a multi-chain module, part of the INV4 protocol, which realizes a decentralized, fluid, & evolvable multi-signature solution for the entire Polkadot ecosystem. Saturn can be better understood as a truly decentralized & future-proof improvement on the idea behind Gnosis Safe. Gnosis acts as the primary choice that the Ethereum community chooses to store & facilitate the multi-signature management of assets. Saturn-Sig will provide all of this functionality (for Polkadot, Ethereum, Cosmos, Binance, and more!); however, it will be provided as both an individual product of the InvArch Network and as an SDK that can be implemented by any parachain or any developer building on any parachain connected to the Polkadot relay.

DAOist CDK — Fusing the power of the INV4 protocol with the power of the RMRK protocol & utilizing the power of Phala Network’s Phat Contracts, the DAOist CDK (community development kit) will be produced. The CDK will be a Fat Client launcher for DAOs that integrates with Discord to 1) decentralize ownership & control over the server, removing a sole individual as a “single point of failure” in the community/organization, 2) automate role, reputation, & reward facilitations for providing a streamlined & autonomous system, and 3) to provide a trustless & community controlled governance system that accommodates multi-body organizations that can be managed through a mass-adopted platform such as Discord. The ultimate goal is to provide true web3 governance & the ability to launch truly decentralized & autonomous organizations without providing a new user interface that people would need to adopt. A custom user interface will be built in the future (with custom community-made front-ends being a possibility as well!); however, it will access the same fat client as any integrated Discord server.

These are only a taste of what is to come, with the most powerful product planned by the InvArch Network team still under wraps. Nonetheless, the above applications & products highlight the advanced & robust possibilities for INV4.

This is one of four papers that are collectively known as the InvArch Papers.




One Account. Any Blockchain. Infinite Possibilities.