The emergence of forks and how they have shaped the cryptocurrency scene
When the word “fork” is mentioned, the popular piece of cutlery comes to mind, but that is not what this article is going to talk about. Forks, in this context, refers to a technical event that occurs when diverse participants need to agree on common rules. A fork occurs when a blockchain diverges into two potential paths forward, either with regard to a network’s transaction history or a new rule in deciding what makes a transaction valid. Forks have been used in order to add new features to a blockchain. There are two types of forks, hard fork, and soft fork. A hard fork is a radical change to the protocol, that makes previously invalid blocks/transactions valid. A soft fork, on the other hand, makes previously valid blocks invalid.
Why the Bitcoin Was Forked
Bitcoin forks have been happening a lot after the emergence of Bitcoin in 2009. However, the rate at which Bitcoin forks happened in 2017 alone, was alarming. While some are not well known, there are a few others that have become prominent. Many of these Bitcoin forks that have sprung up have claimed that they were forked to correct the perceived weakness in the architecture of the original Bitcoin blockchain.