Bitcoin News – March 2017

March was a much more hostile month than the previous months, to no surprise, as there is still no consensus on the sequence of scaling the Bitcoin network. A lot of people started to use this as an excuse to advertise and pump altcoins, making everyone even more distrusting of each others intentions.

In March a large amount of Bitcoin businesses spoke out against Bitcoin Unlimited. This resulted in some miners calling this economic majority “alliance” of users and businesses unimportant for the decisions ahead.

Perhaps the most interesting development was the release of Bitcoin Improvement Proposal 148, as a way to allow nodes instead of miners to activate SegWit. It currently appears to be the most promising way to end the stalemate, but will require more vocal support from users before implementation.

What the monthly news is about:

For those unfamiliar, each day I pick out the most popular/relevant/interesting stories in r/bitcoin and save them. At the end of the month I release them in one batch, to give you a quick (but not necessarily the best) overview of what happened in bitcoin over the past month.

A recap of Bitcoin in March 2017

01: Bitcoin reaches its all-time high on all exchanges & Jihan Wu, co-founder of Bitmain considers Bitcoin Core to be the biggest threat of the long-term development of Bitcoin

02: Digital gold is now worth more than the common measure of physical gold & SegWit has been thoroughly tested for a year on the Testnet & Bitcoin passes the all-time high that was once set on MtGox

03: People realise the parity of Bitcoin and an ounce of gold doesn’t actually make them equal in value & A reminder of the Bitcoin Core scalability roadmap

04: Gemini Exchange is SegWit ready as one of 53 businesses and another 55 on the way & Discussion started by Adam Back on the moderation in r/bitcoin

05: XO.1 announces a stresstest on the Bitcoin network for their voting application & The Central Bank of Nigeria says they can’t stop Bitcoin

06: A thank you from the community to the Winklevoss Twins & Antpool mines a BU block

07: The CIA has backdoors in every Windows PC in “a world shocking revelation”

08: Bitcoin Core 0.14.0 released & The state of New Hampshire is about to completely deregulate Bitcoin

09: BitPay’s point of view on the blocksize debate & Charlie Lee, inventor of Litecoin and head of engineering at Coinbase, on BU

10: Bitcoin ETF disapproved again and crashes to below $1000 & Bitcoin goes from $1200 to $1320 to $1080 to $1250 in 15 minutes

11: The bitcoin price rose back to pre-ETF after crashing, which leaves a lot of people impressed

12: Breeze Wallet will implement TumbleBit, which enhances privacy in Bitcoin

13: AntPool will switch their entire pool to Bitcoin Unlimited

14: A Bitcoin Unlimited remote crash vulnerability is found after a year & a long discussion about Bitcoin on Reddit

15: Many stories about the dishonesty around the Bitcoin Unlimited and Classic bugs, including an interview with the security researcher that found and reported the bugs & Bitcoin Core passes 10.000 pull requests

16: The EU Parliament states they don’t want Virtual Currencies to be anonymous

17: 20 Bitcoin Exchanges announce their hard fork contingency plan

18: A scale of the Bitcoin scalability debate (made by me)

19: Bitmain wants to accelerate the plans for a hardfork & A BIP is made for a user-activated-softfork of SegWit

20: Jihan Wu from BITMAIN talks about miner concerns with 2nd layer scaling & BTCC releases multicurrency Bitcoin wallet with Twitter payments, a debit card and 154 currency conversions

21: Full translation of Chinese miners’ concerns with 2nd layer scaling & Christian Decker, a Lightning Developer, explains the benefits of Lightning for miners & Bitcoin Unlimited suffers from another exploit that causes their nodes to go offline

22: People speak out against Bitcoin Unlimited People speak out against Bitcoin Unlimited after they go from open source to closed source software to fix a bug & Luke-jr proposes a BIP that would allow non-full nodes to identify false versions of the blockchain, instead of having to rely on full nodes

23: Bitcoin Core Technology Roadmap: Schnorr signatures, which will allow native multi-signature transactions and save more blockspace & Large Bitcoin Collider has tried over 1000 trillion private keys

24: Gavin Andresen, Peter Rizun and Jihan Wu are all in favour of attacking the minority chain after the BU hardfork, to force people onto the BU chain

25: BIP148 is released, a proposal that allows nodes to activate soft forks such as SegWit & A German Bitcoin exchange asks its users whether they want BU or SegWit & Andreas Antonopoulos on BU: It doesn’t change the rules, but the rulers who set the rules

26: Mining pool 1Hash with 3% hashpower speaks out against BU & SegWit support reaches a new ATH as ViaBTC and Antpool partially go offline

27: Armory wallet’s developer disagrees with the BU approach on almost every point & Nick Szabo’s bit gold design featured off-chain scalability layers back in 1998 & F2Pool owner Wang Chun states Bitcoin can’t and won’t fork & Canadian bitcoin businesses reject Bitcoin Unlimited

28: Core developer explanations on their visions on scalability & Hal Finney on layer 2 scalability in 2010 & Rootstock smart contracts to be launched in June 2017

29: BIP148’s for a user-activation of SegWit gets a startdate of August 1st & Adam Back gets told to read up on Proof-of-work in the Bitcoin whitepaper, which Satoshi cited him for 9 years ago

30: How Japan prepares to recognize Bitcoin as a method of payment & Ledger (hardware wallet) raises $7M

31: A reminder that Bitcoin core has no central planning & A simple walkthrough of the changes brought by BIP148

Thank you to everyone who is contributing to this exciting space!