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2

With segwit outputs, yes. Segwit outputs do not have a witness that could get discounted. With segwit inputs, in theory possibly, but in practice no. Every standard segwit input today has a non-empty witness, and thus will get a discount.


3

Given that the vast majority of nodes are Bitcoin Core and segwit capable, this is probably okay, but technically does not follow the protocol. Bitcoin Core itself does not check whether a transaction it receives is in response to a particular getdata, and so it does not check whether it asked using MSG_WITNESS_TX or MSG_TX. So responding to a getdata ...


2

BIP144 details the exact format. The idea is that every transaction input has a witness stack (consisting of 0 or more byte arrays, each of variable length). For pre-segwit transactions, all witness stacks are empty. There are two distinct serialization formats for transactions, the basic and the extended one. Whenever all witness stacks in a transaction are ...


3

How am I supposed to broadcast a Taproot transaction to older nodes when they won't accept it? You can't. You need to broadcast it to new nodes for it to propagate.


6

I don't have any concrete cases which could benefit from such short witness programs. It seems very unlikely to me that there can be one with say less than 128 bits programs (as anything less would appear to be unable to achieve the typical 128-bit security level aimed for in Bitcoin), but your example of using it to trigger additional rules is an ...


0

Pycoin now supports segwit xpub after this commit. It is able to parse xpub/ypub/zpub and derive addresses. Ledger is still using incorrect prefix for segwit xpub and you may have to convert the xpub to ypub/zpub appropriately


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