You can hear unsig creator Alexander Watanabe discuss the technical aspects of unsigs in this video.

unsigned_algorithms, or “unsigs”, are an experiment in colour. unsigs have elements that are subject to change within certain chosen conditions. A selection of results of these changes in shape and colour are collected as the set of NFTs we see.

When we look at an unsig we are seeing the colour and form that come out of an arrangement of conditions we put in.

The input conditions of every unsig is saved on the blockchain.

Geometry Elements
Geometry Elements

unsigs have five basic building blocks: 0.5 CDF 0, 1 CDF 0, 0.5 Normal 0, 2 CDF 0 and 4 CDF 0 (1-5 above). These basic building blocks are made out of elements noted as Mult / Dist / Rot in the Geometry Elements diagram above, with the green colour itself being a fourth element.

It isn’t vital to this brief overview to know every technical aspect behind unsigs, but we will quickly go over the four primary elements involved in their composition.

Here is a quick overview of these four elements with images from the video: “Programmatic NFTs – Evolving The NFT Space On Cardano!”.

unsig_00000
unsig_00000

The first element involved in an unsig is colour. One or more of the primary colours Red, Green or Blue are involved in every unsig, except the first unsig, 00000, which is a black square.

unsig 00000 was added after the collection was created as it contains the python script required to generate unsig images. 00000 was minted first. All unsigs link to 00000 and contain the unique parameters to generate their image. 

Element 1: Colours
Element 1: Colours
Element 2: Multipliers
Element 2: Multipliers

The multiplier affects whether the unsig has lines or not. If we look at the five basic building blocks again (below) we see multiplier 0.5 is a softer unbroken gradient. Multiplier 1 is a more solid gradient. Multiplier 2 has a single line and multiplier 4 has three lines.

Element 2: Multipliers
Element 2: Multipliers
Element 3: Distributions
Element 3: Distributions
Element 3: Distributions
Element 3: Distributions
Element 4: Rotations
Element 4: Rotations

The last of the elements is rotation. The building blocks of unsigs can have 0, 90, 180 or 270 degree rotation:

Element 4: Rotations
Element 4: Rotations
Geometry Elements
Geometry Elements

The basic building blocks have only horizontal or vertical lines, but we get six additional forms that include diagonal and curves when two unsigs of the same colour are present in certain combinations. In the diagram below, we see secondary building blocks 6-11 and the basic building blocks from which they are built. These secondary elements, like the basic shapes, can also be rotated (not shown).

The unsigned_algorithm collection starts with the simple building blocks like 00000 to 00007 below:

Simple building blocks
Simple building blocks

Gradually through inclusion of basic and secondary elements, and rotation, the unsigs become more complicated. We can see examples of more complex types, more towards the end of the collection, below:

Complex patterns
Complex patterns

No matter how complicated or simple an unsig looks, it is always made of the same building blocks overlaid on top of each other.

Let’s look at unsig 19068:

unsig_19068
unsig_19068

The elements listed above as “Colours, Distributions, Rotations and Multipliers” are the ingredients that create the unsig pictured. What the elements describe visually is shown on the right.

The two green and blue basic building blocks are of the kind where they combine to create a secondary curved block as described in the Geometry Elements chart. Because they are exactly the same shape, only being different in colour, they combine to create a secondary colour, cyan. The red Normal at 90 degrees doesn’t interact with anything else and we see how it combines with the cyan shape as red horizontal shading across the centre of the unsig.

In even more rare cases, when all three colours have the same shape, the output is white.

Because the elements are saved as information on the blockchain, everything needed to recreate the unsig is permanently present. This is different than most NFTs where we only have a link on the blockchain that connects to an image that is not itself stored on the network. In actuality, the information is the unsig and the image is just a representation of what the elements contained in the information look like when combined as an image.

unsig_26584
unsig_26584

unsig_26584 is another example, with six properties. unsigs make patterns that stick out due to their uniformity and similarity to recognizable shapes. This shape is commonly known as a “star”. In this example, all six building blocks combine to create different secondary forms and overlay to give us this complicated and very colourful unsig.

unsig_00000
unsig_00000

00000 is the first unsig in the collection and has no properties meaning it’s a black square.

The eleven basic shapes of each of the three primary colours are present in the collection as individual unsigs. We have already seen the green ones in the Geometry Elements list (below). The number directly underneath the green building block, for example #00003, is its number in the unsig set. These rare single colour unsigs are called “monochromes.”

Eleven red and blue of the same shapes also exist, we can see examples of this in unsigs 00249 (red) and 00250 (blue) below. We also see green building block 11 (above) in its series position as unsig 00254 below.

There are also secondary monochromes. Below we see the nine pink secondary monochromes in the collection:

Pink unsigs
Pink unsigs

The same shapes exist in yellow and cyan.

As mentioned earlier, in some very rare circumstances, when all three colours and shapes are in the same rotation we get white and black. There are only four of these in the entire collection.

Black and white unsigs
Black and white unsigs
unsig_01424
unsig_01424

As there are an overwhelming number of unsig pattens that can result from the overlaying of building blocks, certain more unusual occurrences catch the eye.

“No-liners” are quite popular and stand out because, unlike the vast majority of unsigs, they have no lines.

Out of the 31,119 unsigs in the collection, there are 311 no-liners.

No-liners
No-liners
unsig_26562
Star
unsig_30969
Ziggy star
unsig_13107
Cross
unsig_01693
window
unsig_28463
Diamond
Spear
unsig_10161
Windmill

Others stand out due to harmonious symmetry. One popular pattern is called a “star”.

The collection holds 249 “clean” stars, there are also stars with other patterns laid over it, sometimes termed a “ziggy star”.

Another stand out pattern is the X or cross. 209 are present in the collection.

Crosses also happen with horizontal and vertical lines. We call these “windows”.

Windows are a very rare pattern at only 46 pieces.

windows
Windows

There are 140 clean “diamonds”, 140 “spears”, 140 “windmills” and many other patterns.

Another way an unsig can stand out is through unique colours. unsigs with different patterns and the same colouring exist, like these distinct yellow and blue unsigs:

Distinct patterns
Unique colours

And here is a sequential couple of light blue and red unsigs:

Distinct patterns
Unique colours

There are many more additional patterns and colour groups than the ones mentioned above. Grouping or naming unsigs are arbitrary and done to help understand the collection as a guideline. We encourage you to explore, appreciate and define them in any way you choose.