You are most probably familiar with the concept of cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency uses computer-generated code to create a form of digital money. Bitcoin was the first to gain popularity. However, hundreds of such coins now exist. The price of a cryptocurrency often goes wild when it approaches common phenomena called “fork”.In order to be able to explain fork, we first need to take a look at some cryptocurrency basics.
What is Fork?
The software of Bitcoin, a decentralized peer-to-peer payment network and currency, is open source. This means that its computing codes are free and available for everyone to view and use. Decentralization would occur via a distributed ledger. So, in other words, everyone on the network would have a copy of all the transactions that were made. Since Bitcoin is a decentralized network, participants in the network need to agree on a set of rules to validate the transactions. These rules include how large a block is, what rewards miners get, how fees are calculated, etc. As a result, a single chain of verified data that all participants agree on is correct.
The causes of a Fork and how it works
This phenomenon occurs when the single blockchain splits into two. This could be due to either a split in consensus or a change in the basic rules of the protocol. If it happens that a group of developers disagree with the direction that Bitcoin is taking they can go their own way. They can create their own version of the protocol and fork the blockchain. Since Bitcoin is open source they can create a new protocol. Having created the new forks they can add new blocks to them.
Hard Fork vs Soft Fork
You should know that more and more forks are going to occur since cryptocurrencies are developing very quickly and this means more disagreements. That’s why anybody involved in this system needs to know about the definition of this phenomenon and different types of it. When a single cryptocurrency splits in two we call it a hard fork. It occurs when a cryptocurrency’s existing code is changed, resulting in an old and new version. In this case, the new version is incompatible with the old one. A soft one, on the other hand, is essentially the same thing, but the idea is that only one blockchain (and thus one coin) will remain valid as users adopt the update. So if the changes made are compatible we call it a soft fork. Both forks create a split but a hard one results in 2 blockchains and a soft fork results in one.
2018 Cryptocurrency Forks
Here we are going to inform you of all past and upcoming forks of the cryptocurrencies which occur during the year of 2018.
|April 21||Litecoin Private|
|April 30||Monero V|
|May 15||Bitcoin Cash|
|May 2018||Ethereum Classic|
|July 5||Bitcoin Gold|
|Q2 of 2018||HempCoin|
|Q3 of 2018||BitcoinZeroX|