I've just had a Sony handycam DCR-DVD106, my wonderful DH bought it me for my birthday. It cost £240 from Amazon and seems, so far, to be idiot proof!
It's pretty compact 6x4x2inches-ish. It has "touch screen" technology! Basically you turn it on, point it where you want to and press a red button to either start or stop recording. When you want to view your piece of art you can press the "house" icon and the first frame of each of your videos is shown, touch which you want to view and amaze yourself!
I've only just installed the CD on my computer but the software seems very easy to follow. To stick your films on the computer you basically plug the camcorder into the computer and follow the v easy on screen instructions. You can edit your footage easily and turn your films into photographs!
You may not have realised but I'm quite enthusiastic! I love this - it's my first camcorder, I've never used anything like this before and I have found it really easy. Also as it's SONY you, we we, trust the brand.
It's got this strap thing on the side so you get less "shake" too!
DH did do quite a bit of research before buying this - I think it's had good reviews.