Ethereum successfully hard forks

The "Byzantium" hard fork upgrade for the Ethereum has successfully rolled out and is running smoothly. This upgrade brings benefits for scalability, privacy, and new kinds of applications. It's a testament to the cohesion of the Ethereum developer community that the network was able to upgrade so smoothly. A hard fork means that everyone who runs the network must agree to run a new version and abandon the old one - this process can be a very difficult one, as seen with Bitcoin's struggles. 

It's important to note that this hard fork wasn't perfectly smooth. Just two days before the upgrade, vulnerabilities were discovered which had to be fixed at the last minute. These bugs, although very obscure, could cause a "consensus failure", where people who maintain the blockchain couldn't come to agreement about which chain is the main one, or made the network vulnerable to ddos attacks. In fact, bugs could still be discovered (and exploited) to this effect. Gavin Wood, a prominent Ethereum developer who founded Parity, has called for more conservative hard forks in the future. 


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