Since then (about 1995-1998), tennis rackets have been pretty much the same: 95-115 in in size and 9-12 oz in weight, with balance points running from very head-light to very head heavy, and made almost entirely out of graphite. Yet, every year the manufacturers come out with some new marketing gimmick that actually makes up at most 1% of the materials or design and has no discernable effect on the performance. You could do blind tests (paint the rackets solid black so no one can see which is which) of rackets of 1999 and those of 2009, and very few would be able to tell the difference. But, every year, low-level tennis players buy into the gimmicks and think their old stuff is out-dated.
I think skis will follow the same route. Sometime soon, if they haven't already, they will reach widths that are the maximum that skiers will find useful (beyond a certain width, the increase in float will be negated by the effect on the skier's stance). After that, the main variation will be in the shape and flex.
Once most of those possibilities have been explored, everything else from there will be minor changes, like Kastle cutting out sections of the tips or some magic material (which actual only makes up a miniscule percentage of the ski). That's when you'll see an extended period of time in which, despite all the marketing, the latest and greatest will still be pretty much the same thing as everything else from the previous several years.
This is definitely not a time of stagnation, but I bet that time isn't too far away.
Edited by CerebralVortex - 11/20/09 at 7:09am