Why would anyone want to hit their board with a hammer?
NSPs & BICs have their place in the world, but neither will compare to a custom board. They are good for beginners, but unless you're pretty careless with your board, it's unusual for them to get dinged too badly anyway.
As for the 'chart' idea, there are just too many variables. It's like saying "What car should I buy". Everyone will have their own ideas as to what is best but it depends on how confident you are.
If you've just started driving, chances are you aren't going to be able to handle a high performance sports car too well. Likewise if you normally drive off-road, you don't really want a sports car!
Boards are the same. If you're just starting out you don't want a paper-thin needle of a board, and if your local break is usually 1-2ft and slow, it's not going to be appropriate!
Unfortunately there is no 'all round' board - if there was, everyone would have one!
It also depends on your style of surfing. Personally, I'm not overly bothered about doing aerials etc, I'm into big carving cutbacks, tuberiding and the odd floater/ snap, so I've got myself a loose Mini-mal and it's cool for me. My friend started surfing at the same time as me and he has a 9'6 longboard and a 6'4 shortboard so he has the choice depending on his mood on the day!!