Bitcoin Scaling ‘Breakthrough’: No Need for Hard Fork, Says Mark Friedenbach

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by Julia Sakovich · 3 min read
Bitcoin Scaling ‘Breakthrough’: No Need for Hard Fork, Says Mark Friedenbach
Photo: Pixabay

It has been announced that now it will be possible to bring significant changes to Bitcoin without a necessity to perform a hard fork.

Though currently the crypto market isn’t experiencing its best times, developers and industry leaders do not want to give up their attempts to promote the development of blockchain technologies which will lead to the growth of the crypto industry.

Scaling of Bitcoin network is one of the major issues that attracts the attention of many tech experts who want to find the most appropriate ways to solve it. It is widely believed that one of the main conditions for Bitcoin to reach worldwide adoption is its ability to process, verify, and put into a block hundreds of transactions each second.

Bearing this idea in mind, Bitcoin developer Mark Friedenbach introduced a method for Bitcoin scaling at a workshop which was held in Tokyo October 5. According to Friedenbach, his innovative method to bring changes to the largest blockchain network doesn’t require a hard fork.

As it was announced in the framework of the presentation, this scaling solution presupposes usage of so-called “forward blocks” that will let scale the network via a row of friendly soft forks and privacy-enhancing alternative ledgers or side chains.

Friedenbach described his method as a solution that is able to increase settlement transaction volume to 3584x current levels and enhance censorship resistance via sharding.

Commenting the sharding notion that was firstly announced by Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin earlier this year, Friedenbach stated:

“One of the methods is sharding. I am talking about database sharding. If we can have one forward blockchain, we could just as easily have 30, and source transactions from them separately such that each shard has its own UTXO set, and transactions are required to source its input from a single shard only. Stuff in one shard is not connected to what happens in other shards. There needs to be a way to transfer between shards, and there are some synchronization requirements, and it’s the same mechanism we used earlier for the coinbase rules.”

During the presentation Friedenbach clearly highlighted that there is no need to conduct a hard fork to solve the Bitcoin scaling issue as it is possible to just apply a soft fork as it was done with Segwit.

He also stated that abandoning of the existing Bitcoin’s halving mechanism that presupposes cutting in half block rewards once in 4 years may bring significant benefits for the network as a more linear and straightforward method of distributing BTC may help to prevent additional interference in the ecosystem.

Let us also remind that while some media reported that Mark Friedenbach is still the Blockstream developer, later it was found out that currently Friedenbach is not a member of this team anymore and the newly-proposed concept is his individual project.

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