The bifurcations in the blockchain networks, also known as forks, are updates made to solve functional problems in the chain code, which can lead to definitive separations of projects because of technical or ideological disagreements that have been debated without reaching consensus. by the community of developers and users. In the particular case of the Bitcoin network, 19 bifurcations have already been counted in the platform and it is expected that in the future more will occur.

This number of bifurcations has been collected by the Bitmex exchange  house , highlighting all the characteristics and reasons for these ramifications. The study generated a story that traces the behavior of Bitcoin from 2010 to the present 2017, differentiating between the softfork (adjustments of consensus rules of block validation) of the hardfork (new rules of consensus in blockchain) that have occurred in this period of time.
The publication highlights that in 2010 there were 6 bifurcations.  The first bifurcation was a softfork that fixed a critical bug that allowed anyone to spend any amount of bitcoins. This bug had to be corrected twice; in the second, evaluations of script signatures and public script keys were also separated .
Another very important softfork at that time was the one that limited the size of block blocks to 1MB, an update that has led to bitter debates in the community and the birth of new projects such as Bitcoin Cash.
However, the most curious softfork of that year was the one that corrected the erroneous creation of 184.5 billion bitcoins (when the maximum number of bitcoins to be created was set at 21 million). This incident resulted in a separation of the for 5 hours. The 0.5 BTC entry transaction that facilitated this error still remains without being spent .
In 2012 only two softfork were given: the first one disabled the transactions with the same identification; the second allowed the transactions to send a script hash instead of a public key to increase the privacy of the transfers. There were no problems in this regard.
In 2013 there are 4 bifurcations, among which an unforeseen hardfork caused by the removal of a group of data (it was corrected with a return of miners to the previous version) and that allowed a double expense of 10,000 dollars;  The change in signaling of the transactions that incorporated the height of the blocks to the coinbase data was also made.
On the other hand, the most controversial hardfork of that year was that of the block that violated the block limit rule of 10,000 BDB (rule later relaxed), an event that is still discussed by specialists of the subject to clarify whether it was indeed a bifurcation or not. , and, if a hardfork has ever been performed on the network.
Gregory Maxwell , developer of Bitcoin Core , commented on this incident stating that the Bitcoin platform is not about hardfork as such, but only about accidents on the network:
It is debatable if this really was a hardfork, as it is almost-non-deterministic. There were previous bugs fixed where previous versions clogged and stopped synchronizing the string before that happened. So I think that by following a really strong definition of creating a blockchain that violates the rules imposed by previous versions, we've never had a hardfork.
Gregory Maxwell
Developer, Bitcoin.
In the period of 2015 , two bifurcations occurred that made possible the introduction of the first new function of the Bitcoin network:  the verification of the blocking time. Likewise, the mining incentive was also eliminated to allow for delayed transactions, a measure that was applied in 2016 with more than 90% success.
However, 2017 was one of the busiest years in the hardfork sector, as signage for the activation of SegWit began to be introduced in a mandatory manner , a measure that had an 80% activation throughout the network. Likewise, the segregated witnesses were updated on the platform recently, this being one of the last hardfork presented by the network.
The bifurcations not only exist to repair errors and optimize chains. All cryptocurrencies - not the ERC20 tokens - have been born from bifurcations of previous chains. However, mentioning each of the bifurcations that have created new currencies from the bitcoin blockchain would take too much time and is not the objective of this article. However, we can mention that this December has been characterized by a feast of new proposals for the network  and next year is coming as the start of various projects. Many updates are still missing for a developing network such as the bitcoin blockchain, so this list of bifurcations will only continue to increase.

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