QuatermassX writes "In a lengthy piece in today's New York Times, Ken Belson equates Sony's troubles in bringing Blu-Ray to market with their classic fumble of Betamax technology in the early 1980's. He also discusses the influence of Microsoft in the recent advances in the adoption of the perceived underdog in this fight, HD-DVD. The article also summarises the various twists and turns in the development of the format along with some scary numbers (that we're familiar with) on the estimated cost of Playstation 3 From TFA: "There are other industry analysts who contend that Microsoft is simply propping up Toshiba to further its own aims, like countering the PlayStation and combating the spread of Sun's Java software. Nonetheless, Toshiba is happy for the backing, given that the format was written off for dead just a few months ago. '"There's no doubt that everyone has various agendas," said Mark Knox, an adviser to the Toshiba promotion group. "But whatever their agenda, Microsoft's support has been a huge boon to HD-DVD.'""