In the File New dialog, Artboards are all the presets designed for the video screen -- that is Web Documents and everything that follows. Another way to know is that they're all 72 dpi. That said, I'll share your suggestion with the team working on this.
As for your measurement settings, those are defined primarily by the language-version of your app (continental French is cm and I believe Canadian French is inches) and then defined by your user settings (found under Preferences > Units & Rulers, although there are a couple items which do not respect this).
Allthough I live in Belgium (the Dutch speaking part) I have the International English version installed for obvious reasons. My Preferences > Units & Rulers state pixels (for rulers) and points (for type).
It is a little inconvenient since we too respect the 300PPI rule for print (and don't count in PPCM). It gets anoying when I reset my preferences just before a training (as well for my tutor-mac as for the workstations of the students). Most people don't look at the Pixels/Centimeter and just put in 300 (and end up with a file more as 2 times too big...)