The latest release of the Bitcoin Core client marks a significant milestone for Bitcoin. Segregated Witness is included in the code, and it seems prime for activation on the network later this year. Various users are already upgrading their Bitcoin nodes to accommodate these new changes. Putting semantics aside for a moment, Andreas Antonopoulos feels SegWit is a major step for the future of Bitcoin.
Segregated Witness Is A Significant Development for Bitcoin
To put things into perspective, the development of Segregated Witness has sparked many debates over the months. There are those who feels this code change represents censorship and political propaganda, whereas others see it as the proverbial “hot water invention” of the cryptocurrency space.
Putting opinions aside for a moment, the concept of Segregated Witness opens a lot of opportunities. Changing the Bitcoin block size – although in a different manner than most people seem to prefer – is a big step forward for the Bitcoin ecosystem as a whole. After over seven years of 1MB blocks, it has become evident the Bitcoin protocol needs to scale to accommodate network growth.
From an engineering point of view, Segregated Witness holds a lot of merits. A lot of thought and work has been put into the development of this concept, and valuable community feedback was collected in the process. That being said, some Bitcoin miners remain on the fence whether or not SegWit is beneficial to them or not.
The bigger question is whether or not the majority of the community will accept Segregated Witness. Not all miners seem to be for this concept, although it is still too early to tell what will happen. Andreas Antonopoulos is fairly sure SegWit will be activated before the end of the year.
I think segwit will be activated and before the end of the year. We'll see.
— Andreas M. Antonopoulos (@aantonop) October 29, 2016
Network nodes upgrading to the latest Bitcoin Core client is significant, as they are responsible for enforcing consensus rules in an economic setting. However, unless the vast majority of network nodes process transactions through SegWit-enabled clients, the solution will not activate on the network. Either way, critical months are ahead for the Bitcoin community.
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