Lithography is the largest capital investment and the largest operating cost component of leading edge semiconductor fabs. In addition, it is the dominant factor in determining the performance of a semiconductor device and is important in determining the yield and thus the economics of a semiconductor circuit. To increase competitiveness and broaden adoption of circuits and the end products in which they are used, there has been and continues to be a dramatic acceleration in the industry roadmap. A critical factor in the acceleration is driving the lithographic images to smaller feature size. There has always been economic tension between the pace of change and the resultant circuit cost. The genius of the semiconductor industry has been in its ability to balance its technology with economic factors and deliver outstanding value to those using the circuits to add value to their end products. The critical question today is whether optical lithography can be successfully and economically extended to maintain and improve the economic benefits of higher complexity circuits. In this paper we will discuss some of these significant tradeoffs required to maintain optically based lithographic progress on the roadmap at acceptable cost.