Yeah - William Riedel aka Stretch down in Santa Cruz, he shapes DJ James signature model, in an interview tells it very well. There are only two kinds of tails, the rounded pin (which shortens the rail line) and everything else. The idea is that if the tail is the same width, curve, etc they all ride the same.
Go to page 5 of the interview here
Now...the other school of thought is that each shape provides unique characteristics. I think that Harbour surfboards does the best job of detailing this "other" school, here