Solana has integrated a ChatGPT plugin developed by Solana Labs, marking the first-ever Layer 1 network integration with artificial intelligence. 

The Solana Foundation, the entity behind the Solana blockchain, announced the integration in a May 23 press release

“Every developer building consumer-oriented apps should be thinking about how their app is going to be interacted with through an AI model because this is a new paradigm for telling computers what to do,” said Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko.

Yakovenko also opined that the natural language interface enabled by ChatGPT is as big of a shift as when Microsoft Windows and the computer mouse were first introduced.

The integration will allow users to transfer tokens, inspect transactions, interpret public account data and buy NFTs filtering them by floor price directly through ChatGPT with a plugin that can be downloaded on Github. 

Solana developers have plugged in ChatGPT to a Remote Procedure Call or RPC node, that allows users to read blockchain data and send transactions to different networks. Although the plugin will function like a text-based block explorer, it cannot yet perform functions like minting an NFT on-chain.

The fact that Solana is cheaper and faster to transact on than some other blockchains could also make it easier for users to run transactions within a ChatGPT loop.

“That means that the machine interface to the chain is cheap enough for ChatGPT to be able to do it. You need both speed and cost advantages to make a good user experience, otherwise, it doesn’t really work,” explained Yakovenko. 

Along with the integration, the Solana Foundation has also increased the amount available in its AI-focused grants program to $10 million and started a 3-month accelerator program for university students experimenting with blockchain and AI.

So far, the cohort of members in the program has created an “ask Solana U chatbot” which answers questions about the blockchain’s development and “Solana Audits AI” which enhances security for Solana-based programs.