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Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP)

A Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) is a formal proposal to change Bitcoin. Upgrades and security improvements enter the Bitcoin codebase via BIPs. Upgrades such as SegWit, HD Wallets, PSBT and more were all introduced via BIPs, which then underwent a review process and community discussion before being accepted. However, not all BIPs propose code changes. Some, such as BIP 39’s standard of mnemonic phrase backups, establish standards to be used by other Bitcoin related projects.

Smaller changes to Bitcoin, such as bug fixes, code refactoring, or minor efficiency improvements are not included in BIPs. Rather, these changes are submitted directly to Bitcoin’s codebase as proposed code changes.