Yes, quite easy to use I would agree. Well, just make sure you have the necessary adapters/machines to make the tapes digital for DVD. Actually my dad and a few of his neighbors have similar cameras. Not too bad actually--wise choice.
Tech gadgets you want? I might be able to help.
I think Best Buy has a spring clean-out coming up soon for their winter inventory so if you have been eying up their camera stuff or other, do take a look. Lately I haven't been too happy with them, though. However, I expect you're tech savvy guy and won't be taken so easily, either.
If you like Green laser pointers, they are cheaper than they ever have been right now at Fry's electronics ($40). In fact, since I went to Fry's in person I can't get over the incredible selection they have. Must see at least once in person. Just a caution, I hear they aren't so kind about returns and do be wary about marked down items. Otherwise there is always online. http://www.frys.com/
In various places IRL you might find those miniature battery powered plasma globes. There are similar USB powered ones
available at thinkgeek right now.
Thinkgeek always has awesome stuff.
Most relevant would be digital picture frames
. Personally I'd go with the one that prints photos
. And there's also just other goodies like:
Trekkie plate switch covers, cocktail chemistry set for booze, pocket emulator systems, new generation of FX lightsabers, even some awesome shirts. Hard to go wrong with thinkgeek, really.
Best of luck.