Bitcoin Gets Sexy: Goodbye Pasty Neckbeards, Hello Vin Armani
Bitcoin cash is beginning to shed its inner nerd, and Vin Armani is one of the leading reasons. He’s lived what most men can only dream as a high class, world renowned escort to wealthy women. More recently, he’s the brain behind Cointext, a revolutionary rebranding of sending crypto without needing an internet connection. If all that wasn’t enough, he’s also something of a compelling philosopher. We caught up with Mr. Armani ahead of his long-form interview on Humans of Bitcoin, an episode that’s quickly become mandatory listening.
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News.Bitcoin.com: Dude, you’re beefcake. You’ve got ladies. You’re in great shape. You’re a television star. You don’t live in your mom’s basement. What the hell are you doing in crypto?
Vin Armani: Ha! The smartest people I know have figured out how much better life is on all fronts with a little time spent in the gym and a little money spent on a good tailor. I never lived in my mom’s basement. That’s probably attributable to my father, a tech entrepreneur, buying me a TI-99 for my 5th birthday (complete with cassette drive) and spurring my love for technology. By the time I was 15, I was already getting myself into unnecessary trouble with hacking and phreaking. When the TV show came along, [Showtime’s Gigolos] totally out of the blue, in 2010, I was already well into my software development career and I actually had to quit my position at what is now Saatchiart.com (where I’m told much of my code is still in the foundation of their platform) to go to Vegas and film the first season of the show [Showtime’s Gigolos, which ran for six season].
It was around that time that a developer buddy passed along a link to some information about Bitcoin. I believe that I first downloaded mining software in 2011, though I didn’t see it as anything more than just novelty at the time. I bought my first bitcoins in December 2012 for $15 each from Julian Tosh, who was running Bitcoinsinvegas.com at the time. When the price went to $1,000 for the first time in 2013, I cashed out, had an awesome Christmas, and I’ve been a vocal proponent ever since. When I started doing The Vin Armani Show in the Fall of 2016, cryptocurrency was a significant part of the show. It’s an even bigger part of the show, and my consciousness, now.
Bitcoin Core vs Bitcoin Cash
You took-on the bitcoin cash versus bitcoin core debate. Your tweets advocating bitcoin cash are increasing. What attracts you to bitcoin cash?
Starting in 2014, I began working on some prototypes for various gaming devices that could utilize [bitcoin core (BTC)] as a settlement layer. One example, Ocelot is a mobile slot machine app that interfaces with a paper fiat collecting kiosk. Basically, it allows a player to insert paper cash and receive [BTC] in a wallet integrated into the app. They then use that [BTC] to gamble within the app and can “cash out” back to fiat. Because transactions would confirm, at that time, with miner fees of under 1 cent, I (and several very important gaming industry luminaries in Vegas) thought it could be a game changer.
As fees began to go into double digits in cents and then move into the multi-dollar range, I was forced to drop [BTC] as the settlement layer. Same goes for a tipping prototype that I built for Legends Room strip club in Vegas – the first “Strip Club ICO“. Fees got ridiculous and I lost all confidence in [BTC]. I have personally seen the power and potential of cryptocurrency as a medium of exchange. That’s where the value has always been for me. When fees got out of control, I began advocating Litecoin and Ethereum, but neither felt as solid as [BTC] had felt to me when I first encountered it and got a chance to develop using the platform.
After the fork, as Bitcoin Cash showed itself to be a return to the cryptocurrency I fell in love with, and as I was able to move my projects over to Bitcoin Cash with minimal effort, my excitement for Bitcoin returned. Bitcoin Cash brought me back into the fold. I don’t think I’m alone in that feeling. As I look around the cryptocurrency landscape, the voices and mindsets most aligned with my own are all coming from individuals who have thrown their lot in with Bitcoin Cash.
These Are Important Times
You’ve said your program, The Vin Armani Show, is an exploration of a whole new way of being. Can you expand on that a bit? Is that just the hubris of our time? What is so different about this time in human history?
Every generation probably thinks that they are living in the most important time ever. To a certain extent, that is actually true. I think what is different about the time in which we currently live is substantially different, however. There was a time, at the dawn of our species, where every homosapien on earth could communicate, face-to-face, with every other member of the species. After all, they were members of the same small family. From the time that the first band of our early ancestors separated from that family and set off to find new lands in which to live, humans have existed in distinct pockets.
Over hundreds of thousands of years, we eventually began to reconnect with our lost relatives. For the first time in human history, since the dawn of our species, every human on the planet really can communicate, in real time, face to face, with every other human. I believe that represents a “reset button” for the species. In fact, it may represent our evolving into a completely new species. Our generation is going to be the one that decides the fate of that species. These are important times.
Learn more about Mr. Armani’s projects on the latest episode of Humans of Bitcoin, online now.
Do you think we’re living in unique times? Let us know in the comments.
Images via the Showtime, Gigolos, Cointext.
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