I am a DSLR user and owner/past owner of many cameras. My current pocket point and shoot/backup camera is a Canon Powershot SX210 IS. I bought the Nikon Coolpix S8200 mainly because of its backlit CMOS sensor (which is an improvement over the Canon's).
Since using the S8200, I have been very pleasantly surprised. First, the build quality appears to be solid, weighty and has a quality feel to it (although not too sure about the paint on the thumbwheel - bound to be susceptible to wear and tear). Secondly, the handling is pleasant and assured, with a DSLR feel. Thirdly, the image quality is very good for a point and shoot. Noise, the dreaded noise is well controlled when light is good, but noticable in low-light situations.
The biggest surprise to me is the way the camera takes pictures. It works entirely off auto or scenes, there is even an auto-scene setting which works like a dream. It automatically picks the scene settings, and the results are amazing; making taking pictures a breeze (because I no longer have to think about shutter speed, aperture, lighting etc...). There are no manual modes of any sort, and I can't even revert to my sometimes obsessive desires to control every aspect of a camera! What a joy.
I think Nikon has made a very good 'point and shoot' camera, if you just allow the camera to its own devices, it'll reward you with good pictures.