Conversations #5 - Vinay Gupta


A Conversation With CEO of Mattereum, Vinay Gupta—

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Hey Eclectic Spacewalkers!

Last fall (2019), after traveling to Copenhagen, Denmark to speak to Ronni Abergel, Founder & CEO of the Human Library Organization (HLO), we headed to jolly ole’ London town (please excuse the cliché) to have a conversation with Vinay Gupta, the CEO of Mattereum.

I have followed Vinay’s work for quite some time, and he was at the top of my list of people to sit down with while in London. Since my early days of Bitcoin advocacy, I noticed Vinay was on the front lines of separating hype from substance regarding Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Cryptocurrency in general. He was trained in the technical science of computers, AND he didn’t seem to have the mentality of others in get rich quick schemes - he seemed in it for the people. In researching for our conversation I came to believe this assumption to be true, but even more so now.

I have watched video after video of his talks, and Vinay on other podcasts. I just hoped I would be able to get him going for a fruitful & thoughtful conversation. I think I succeeded in that venture. Strap in and put your thinking caps on!

We talked about his early days and influences growing up in Scotland. We spoke about how Buckminster Fuller’s “doing more with less” was the founding principle for him to make a usable shelter at Burning Man, but also the opportunity for the finished product - The Hexayurt - to be deployed in disaster areas. We discussed how cryptocurrencies were almost inevitable because of the problems with payments over the internet, and how he came to help launch Ethereum. (He denies that he is Satoshi Nakamoto.)

The later parts of our conversation focused on his founding of Matterum and how its main mission is to:

“Turn Law into Code” by “Organizing the world's property and making it universally accessible and useful.”

In their White Paper, Matterum says it is a “commercial infrastructure to turn smart contracts into legal contracts that can be efficiently enforced all over the world, without needing new legislation, creating liquidity for $50 trillion of assets globally.”

“Our goal is to deliver a significant reduction of the environmental and social harms caused by inefficiencies in industrial capitalism, using the Ethereum blockchain.”

By humanizing the singularity Matterum will not only help in the legitimacy and trust of assets, but will also help fight against climate change by “creating digital twins of material objects and using blockchain smart contracts to automate all aspects of how material things are traded, owned, and combined. We aim to squeeze out these systemic inefficiencies and more accurately allocate capital to activities which promote well-being.”

Vinay and I had a fantastic conversation about his journey founding Mattereum, and how our current default thinking mode of “we are saints living in heaven” needs a complete 180 degree turn to a starting point of “we are bastards that live in hell.” I’ll let him explain in the podcast.

Our conversation also got into philosophy, sociology, economics, technology, and much more. I thank Vinay for his time, and the expansive discussion we had.

I hope you enjoy the conversation.



  • Growing up in Scotland with immigrant parents (00:01:55)

  • Biggest influences growing up (00:06:57)

  • Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, & The Hexayurt (00:10:29)

  • Influence of Twitter in discourse & communication (00:16:32)

  • Personal philosophy changing over the years (00:25:03)


  • What is the Blockchain? (00:31:59)

  • Trade-offs of the Blockchain (00:41:21)

  • Are you Satoshi Nakamoto? If not, then who is? (00:55:16)

  • Helping launch Ethereum (00:59:43)

  • Founding Mattereum - “Turning Law into Code.” (01:08:41)

  • Mattereum proof of concept trust model with William Shatner & his collectibles (01:26:40)

  • What would you say to the world, if you were experiencing the “Overview Effect?” (01:51:42)

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