Audioholics site wonders why the HDMI standard is such a mess? The article's author suggests that the format was designed for the benefit of the content-producers and not the consumer. The result is a signal that's hard to route and switch, as well and unnecessarily complicated cable assemblies. They reach back to the DVI standard to see what might be done to make HDMI a little more consumer-friendly, with numerous technical elements woven through the discussion.
"DVI lacked a couple of things which the consumer audio/video industry wanted. It was implemented on a variety of HD displays and source devices, but it was confusing for the consumer because of the many variants on the standard and different connector configurations, and it didn't carry audio signals. A consortium to develop and promote a new interface, HDMI, was formed; the idea was to come up with a standard which could be implemented more uniformly, was less confusing, and offered the option of routing audio signals along with video."