The most informative site I found when deciding on a new camera was click here. I eventually bought a Canon Powershot S45 which can be found on the web for £408. I chose this camera because of its rock solid build quality, is compact, has a sliding lens cover, fits easily in the pocket, has 4 million pixel resolution and a high resolution 10 x zoom (3 x optical)lens which starts at the relatively wide angle of 35 mm equivalent. In addition it uses compact flash storage which is more robust than smart media - it will also accept an IBM Microdrive. I have found that for family snaps and holiday shots a wide angle lens is more important than telephoto - lots of digital cameras tend to have longer focus lenses which ruled them out for me.
Finally - it is made by one of the most reputable and long-standing camera and imaging specialists - and not a sideline from a conventional film or printer specialist.