Tezos has been in active development since summer 2014, when we noticed that Bitcoin suffered from a critical governance problem. When our predictions came true almost two years later, we redoubled our efforts. Crypto-currencies need governance by consensus, not by roundtable. Tezos is the first, and only blockhain implementation putting stakeholders in charge of governance.
Tezos is currently undergoing testing and bug fixes to move out of its prototype phase. We hope to release the alpha in summer 2016.
Tezos' unique smart contract language has full formal specification. This makes Tezos contracts candidates for formal verification, a process which mathematically guarantees the correctness of the code. Such a step is critical given the potentially large amounts at stakes in financial agreements. Currently, no other smart contract library offers this feature.
By implementing voting rights from the start, the ultimate owners of any governance choice or innovation in Tezos will sit at the proverbial table. The self-interest of Tezos owners will attract a variety of business and transactional innovations to the ledger's fabric. Though every governance scheme is subject to pitfalls, governance by vested stakeholders is typically a more sustainable practice than oligarchy.
Tezos decomposes the architecture of a cryptographic ledger into three layers: a network layer, a consensus layer and a transaction layer. By decoupling the three layers, participants can allow the protocol to evolve in a decentralized fashion.