SLR's are great, except the Lenses cost so much!
I got a Canon S50. Aperature priority, Shutter priority, and Full manual. So there's plenty of control if you want it. There are also plenty of automatic modes too. Its relatively small and fits in my pocket. Nice solid design, and I got it online for about 400$ This january. 5 megapixels and it got pretty nice reviews at DPReview.www.pricegrabber.com
to check prices.