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What is Tezos?

  • Tezos attempts to achieve full decentralization by deploying a unique democratized governance system based on what is known as ‘digital commonwealth.’
  • As a Liquid Proof of Stake (LPOS) enabled blockchain, it enables the token-holders to participate in the laid down on-chain governance process by making decisions that will help shape and drive increased adoption of the Tezos protocol. 
  • Tezos protocol is built using the OCaml language, deploys a smart contract using Michelson, and further supports the Turing-complete contract which helps developers to seamlessly deploy DApps on the Tezos blockchain. 

There is a high chance that even an average Joe who just joined the cryptocurrency space may have heard of Tezos (XTZ) due to the popularity of the digital asset following its recent rally. Tezos is an open-source platform that provides robust support for DApps and smart contracts. It deploys a unique democratized governance system based on what is known as ‘digital commonwealth.’

The idea of the ‘commonwealth’ is to create an ecosystem that links a group or entity that has common goals and interests. This enables the token holders to participate in the laid down on-chain governance process by making decisions that will help shape and drive increased adoption of the Tezos protocol. 

Relying on this governance system, Tezos can achieve high-end decentralization and while mitigating contentious hard forks via self-amendments and on-chain governance systems. The platform deploys a Liquid Proof of Stake (LPOS) consensus network which supports the Turing-complete contract. 

Token-holders have the privilege to stake a certain number of XTZ to participate in the network consensus. On the Tezos blockchain, this process is known as ‘baking’. Bakers get rewarded for adding a block to the blockchain and in turn securing the network. 

Brief History Of Tezos

Tezos was co-founded by Arthur Breitman, and Kathleen Breitman; who has reportedly been developing the platform since 2014. The company is domiciled in Switzerland and now has a bunch of developers working on the platform. Dynamic Ledger Solutions (DLS) is the parent company of Tezos and it holds all funds raised during the ICO under the Tezos foundation

In 2017, Tezos (XTZ) had a blockbuster token sale, a record-breaking ICO in which the blockchain platform raised $228 million in BTC and ETH in just two weeks. The largest capital raised at the time. There were delays in the Tezos launch until June 2018 which marked the genesis block and had 608 million XTZ entering into circulating supply. 

The delay between the time of the token sale and the period the blockchain finally went live was instigated by management issues that originated between the co-founders and the president of the Tezos Foundation, Johann Gevers. 

Gevers initially had a good reputation with the company and was wrongly trusted to be in charge of all the funds under the Tezos foundation with single signature access. However, it turned out that Gevers had zero interest in developing the project. Due to the unlimited powers within his reach, he promoted himself to the position of the executive director and tried to link the Tezos Foundation to his personal company.  

A lot of drama brewed between the co-founders and Johann Gevers following this development. Investors were caught in the middle, with no token to either liquidate their position or continue holding. 

After a long debate and undesirable media attention, a compromise was reached which mandated the Foundation to own the Tezos source-code and trademark from the Breitmans’ company for 8.5% of the funds raised in the ICO, with additional 10% of the tokens generated in the genesis block. Consequently, Gevers left the company after receiving over $400,000 in severance.

Tezos Market Cap and Price Movement

Tezos has a current block time of 60 seconds and annual inflation of 3.6%, with about 736,413,944 XTZ in circulating supply with no maximum supply at the moment. The digital asset ranks among the top 15 cryptocurrencies by market cap and has rallied over 300% since the March 12 black Thursday selloff. 

At the time of putting up this piece, XTZ was trading at $3.22 with a market capitalization of over $2 billion. XTZ opened trading in June and had an all-time low of 0.314 USD on Dec 07, 2018. Since the massive selloff in march, XTZ price has impressively pivoted and is now on track towards hitting a new all-time high.  

Current Development Plan

The protocol is built using the OCaml language, OCaml deploys formal verification to mathematically validate the accuracy of computer programs thereby fostering ultimate security. The platform smart contract was written in a Turing complete language known as Michelson

The team’s choice of Michelson was highly criticized by the community who upheld that Michelson lacks popularity to compete with other popular languages, and developers might be having a hard time deploying DApps on the platform. 

The team immediately addressed this challenge by developing the Liquidity language which compiles seamlessly with Michelson, making it easy and faster for deployment. Currently, several  DApps are being deployed on this protocol. Since the launch of the Beta network in July 2018, Tezos has strived to maintain an upward growth trajectory, despite the initial challenge that plagued its early development. 

In the first quarter of 2020, Tulip Tools released the latest version of Tplus, a tool that helps developers automate common tasks like setting up of Tezos nodes/sandboxes and related software that is helpful during the development process, such as indexes, APIs, and blockchain explorers.

Future Roadmap

Tezos governance system doesn’t necessarily permit it to have a conclusive roadmap. What this implies is that each phase of the project is vetted by the community. Once necessary future development options are explored the community vote for their approval before proceeding to implementation. 

Commenting on the roadmap,  a Reddit post on the official Tezos subreddit reads, the Tezos foundation will be “supporting initiatives put forward by the community in their efforts to advance Tezos”

So, there you have it. Tezos has been resilient and is one of the most innovative smart contract enabled platforms with top-end security features. Leaving all its initial troubles behind, Tezos is now one of the most secure, institutional-grade smart contract platforms currently in existence. 

This is part of a continuing series on important altcoins. For more information about how can go about investing in these coins, reach out to us here.

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