Welcome to our weekly bitcoin news recap, where we cover top headlines and stories in the world of bitcoin each week. This week, our CEO Peter Smith and Security Engineer Kristov Atlas wrote a brief history on bitcoin forks and the importance of software consensus. Reaching a consensus on the Bitcoin network block size will no doubt continue to be a rising conversation piece for the community. Other topics this week include Bitcoin.com’s new bitcoin billboard that went up in Silicon Valley, and further exploration of blockchain technology. Get all this news and more in this week’s Blockchain recap.
Scaling Bitcoin[A Brief History of Bitcoin Forks](https://blog.blockchain.com/2016/02/26/a-brief-history-of-bitcoin-forks/)
At Blockchain, we monitor both the Bitcoin network and new proposed changes to it. With the current debate on how to scale the network ongoing, we thought it would be useful to provide some background and general information.
In addition to our own research, others are holding conferences to address the challenges facing bitcoin such as the upcoming MIT annual Bitcoin Expo, which will undoubtedly touch on the block size issues. One such solution which has been released to the market to address scaling is Bitcoin Classic, which just released its 2016 roadmap. The Classic roadmap comes on the heels of another conference recently held in Hong Kong with representatives of Bitcoin Core and Chinese miners, who together came to a consensus on how they wish to scale Bitcoin. Part of the issue with the scaling debate is that bitcoin has no clear leader, which in the end should be perceived as positive despite the challenges along the way.
Exit here for bitcoin[Check Out Bitcoin’s Silicon Valley Billboard](https://news.bitcoin.com/check-bitcoins-silicon-valley-billboard/)
Bitcoin.com is growing. From news to podcasts, forums, and educational information on how to purchase and use the digital currency. To help educate the public, Bitcoin.com installed a billboard in Silicon Valley, California promoting the virtual money.
Japan may also be getting on the road to bitcoin, as a new article this week claims that it is considering making bitcoin legal currency. The changes would mean bitcoin could be more tightly regulated and taxed, and are likely to lead to more investment in developing cryptocurrency infrastructure in Japan. Bitcoin is even influencing the Australian Central Bank, who discussed digital currencies and distributed ledgers and disclosed that Australia could one day have its own digital dollars. Citing that bitcoin has stimulated “interest in the potential offered by distributed ledgers, extending to the possibility of central-bank-issued digital currencies.”
The blockchain is going strong in 2016[Intel is Testing a Blockchain it Built With a Fantasy Sports Game](http://www.coindesk.com/intel-testing-blockchain-built-fantasy-sports-game/)
IT giant Intel is running an internal blockchain trial centered on a fantasy sports market. The proof of concept works by enabling the exchange of digitized assets that represent shares of different sports teams. Each contestant is given a set of shares, as well as a quantity of in-game currency called “mikels.”
Last year the term blockchain became a huge media buzzword, and so far in 2016 it shows no signs of letting up, with everyone jumping on the blockchain-bandwagon. The UK Financial Conduct Authority is said to give blockchain technology breathing space to develop while monitoring its progress. What could be the next great things for blockchain tech? Possibly disrupting Uber, Airbnb, and iTunes.
Last Saturday, we told you about a special feature in every Blockchain Wallet that makes it extra easy to find bitcoin-friendly merchants conveniently close to you. Our Merchant Map connects you with local places where you can shop, eat, drink, and support the growing bitcoin community too.
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