Free the Children, Bitcoin! – CoinGeek

On February 4, 2020 with the Coinbase tag “ on behalf of Satoshi Nakamoto”, the Genesis update for Bitcoin SV was activated by this transaction at block height 620,539. With that, the overwhelming majority of Bitcoin rules at the protocol level have been restored and opened wide. Honest nodes and aggressive hashers enjoyed the removal of the block size limit, the restoration of the nLockTime and nSequence rules, the removal of P2SH, and tons of small improvements to the efficiency of the code running the network. However, there was one annoying little change that didn’t unlock with the debut of Genesis: the child restriction on unconfirmed parent transactions!

Often referred to as the “ancestral limit” or the “speed limit,” this is one of the last deviations from economic illiteracy inherited from BTC Core. This restriction was based on the assumption that the block size limit is / was permanent and that transactions should be ranked by the value of their fee in order to be allowed over the severely restricted BTC network. One consequence of this arbitrary modification of the Bitcoin protocol is that only 25 transactions could be reissued before a block confirmation of the parent transaction, which typically takes ten minutes.

This is not a big deal for the little blockers who (can’t) perform a lot of small transactions, but for Bitcoin SV users, the limit has been a big disappointment in many use cases! Imagine you have a debate on Twetch, upload a large webpage to, or let it rain on Peergame, and the worst in the world happens:

Bitcoin SV is billed as the only scalable blockchain because it has no arbitrary limits! So have we all been lied to? Was that an oversight in the implementation? Users around the BSV economy complained.

Dean Twitter Post

Some more eloquent than others!

Randy Twitter post

Once the speed limit was reached, average users had to wait for a lock to resume. And sometimes blocks are not consistently timed, so this can cause an excited new user to shut down completely because the network cannot serve them.

This was certainly a loss of money for any application struggling to keep BSV users’ attention without network rubs – resulting in a UX disaster for the emerging startups building on Bitcoin SV.

Kurt Twitter post

Noble half steps

TAAL Distributed Information Technologies Inc. (CSE: TAAL | FWB: 9SQ1 | OTC: TAALF) and a few other honest nodes were smart about accepting higher limits when complaints surfaced on social media. Thus, 50-100 unconfirmed children were activated while some due diligence was carefully managed by the team working on the SV Node software. This extra respite was certainly appreciated, but not exactly the earth-shattering change that would allow an explosion of new use cases. But some nifty workarounds have been developed, and as companies do, customizations and user guides have been provided for splitting UTXOs.

Peergame Twitter post

But in order for Bitcoin SV to really become the real “Bitcoin Unlimited”, something bigger had to be done.

The solution

The head of the Bitcoin SV Node Team, Steve Shadders, had named 2020 as the target year for exceeding the limit; He stated several times that he intended to make this a priority, but that there was a level of testing that absolutely had to be completed first. Perhaps for reasons of holiday theater, the tests lasted until after the last full business week of the year.

In true Shadders fashion, a Santa hat appeared on his Twitter profile picture without warning or prelude and a Christmas present was promised. On December 24th, Shadders let the world know that we would have something special to sit under the tree – as long as we keep it indoors for a few more weeks …

Shadder's Twitter post


Bitcoin SV version 1.0.7 (Dynastic) will be released “early” January and will increase the standard limit for ancestors to 1000 children of an unconfirmed parent! That’s more than one unconfirmed transaction per second between average block times, which means the speed limit is virtually out of reach for human users.

What about machines?  Memes

According to Shadders, “… we see no obvious reason not to remove it completely, except for an abundance of caution in a hostile environment. Rest assured, however, that after a few months of this 1000 limit in the wild, we intend to get rid of it altogether. “

With nodes across the network being updated in January, the ancestor limit should usher in a new era of use cases in the newly liberated Bitcoin SV environment. Shadders concluded his announcement with the words: “Like the explosion of script experiments that we saw after Genesis, I expect a new wave of innovation with long transaction chains.”

Will there be room for more efficiency in the future? Most certainly. In fact, a chronicle is being written about it … But this is for a vacation in the future!

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin For Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide, to learn more about Bitcoin – as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto – and blockchain.

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