You're absolutely right. My gripe is with retail stores pushing inappropriate gear to resort visitors, and especially inappropriate high-end rentals to people who have been skiing for long enough to overestimate their own abilities.
I don't teach beginners very often, so I'm not looking for safe green terrain for my students. Most of my folks are level 7 and up, learning to master more challenging terrain. The collision problem arises in the high-traffic areas where trails converge above lifts. Out-of-control skiers blast off the steeper runs, or out of the trees, and cross through slower traffic coming off blue and green trails toward the lift. Vail has for years posted "Slow" signs and yellow-jacketed traffic cops in these areas, but the problem persists. As background, the company this year re-allocated safety funding away from pre-season employee fitness testing (originally meant to help prevent knee injuries) toward anti-collision measures. We'll see what they come up with, over and above what's already in place.
Agreed, out-of-control skiers and boarders, of all ages, will always be with us. But inappropriate gear exacerbates the problem and I'd like to see the shops pitch in to help alleviate it.
Seth, I once had an old pair of straight K2 skis that looked not much different than the pair on the cover of your ski maintenance book. This ski, though very skinny by today's standards would rise up on the top of powder with very little speed. I've been on many much fatter modern skis, none of which seem to rise as well. I theorized that it's the shovel shape. They don't make those long turned up shovels anymore. Have you had any similar experiences? Is it possible we've lost good powder capabilities on narrow skis in exchange for less shovel and thus less tip mass for more stable carving with less chatter?