Time to Move on: The Worst Thing You Can Do Is Nothing

The bitcoin community is in the middle of a civil war. And the crux of the war comes down to a single word: blocksize.

Right now, the bitcoin network can only support up to 7 transactions per second. Clearly, some changes will need to be made if bitcoin is to reach levels mainstream payments providers such as Visa. (designed to handle peak volumes of 10,000 transactions per second)

But the fact is that those favoring change are having the hardest time choosing one specific scaling solution, segregated witness, bitcoin unlimited, user-activated soft fork or other scaling solutions.

Segregated Witness

Segregated Witness was proposed by Core developer Wuille at the Scaling Bitcoin conference in Hong Kong in December, 2015. It is designed as a compromise solution to make the Bitcoin network approve more transactions with each block.

What’s special about Segwit is that a consensus of the entire Bitcoin network isn’t required in order to make it work. This is known as a “soft fork” – meaning Segwit will work even if some users don’t update their software to the new version, making it much easier to implement.

Bitcoin Unlimited

Bitcoin Unlimited is primarily designed to ease the process for users who want to pick their own block size limit.  It has a lot of similarities between Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin Unlimited. That is only normal, as the code base used for both branches of development is nearly identical. But it offers high levels of security, privacy, and stability, seeking to provide a voice to all stakeholders in the Bitcoin ecosystem.

User-activated Soft Fork

Rather than requiring a specific amount of network hashpower – 95% in the case of Segregated Witness, or 75% in the case of Bitcoin Unlimited – a user-activated soft fork is triggered in a different manner. Individual users, companies, and service providers can activate this soft fork within their Bitcoin software client. At a predetermined time in the future, the soft fork will be activated. Any new block of data on the network not adhering to these new rules will be automatically rejected.

This may sound rather dangerous, but makes a lot of sense to less tech-savvy users.

No one knows which solution is best for the bitcoin ecosystem in the long run. But as the debate drags on, more people have realized that the worst scenario is doing nothing.

After weeks of contemplation, F2Pool finally decided to support SegWit on bitcoin. And following F2Pool’s announcement, ViaBTC clarified its stance on SegWit, noting that SegWit cannot solve the capacity problem.

Should SegWit be activated, Bitcoin will have no choice but to proceed with Core’s current roadmap in the coming years, which will further intensify the impacts of an incompetent dev team on Bitcoin community and rule out the possibilities for Bitcoin to grow in multiple directions.”

 

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