Link to my latest edition to Gamasutra's Analyze This feature.
On whether the industry will develop a standardized gaming platform: I do not think the industry will ever resort to one console. It would be bad for the industry. I could understand the argument for a single development standard, but not a single hardware standard. A single development standard would obviously make the lives of developers much easier and game development overall cheaper.
However, in regards to a single console, it would hinder innovation and consumer choice. I think everyone would agree that life would be pretty boring if all we had were Windows-based computers. One console in my opinion would be a step backward for the industry, not forward.
On how independent developers would not benefit in a market with a single gaming platform: I have talked with many publishers and developers and I understand the struggles they go through. However, consumers benefit when choice exists. It causes hardware and software makers to continually innovate and differentiate to stay competitive. It is those factors that contribute to the growth of an industry. At the end of the day, consumers are the ones spending the money to drive the interactive entertainment industry forward. They are the ones who need to be catered to because they are the ones really in control.
On the PC already being the de facto standardized gaming platform: This analogy for the PC is true right now because Windows is the dominant operating system. This does not mean that companies using other operating systems won't enter the market. I hear a lot of developers are either supporting or looking to support Apple. This, again, is good for the consumer. The consumer should choose the platform that fits their life best, and this is how it should be.