Since our digital cameras are battery dependent, it pays to learn something about possible pitfalls when using batteries.
Disposable or alkaline batteries should be removed from your camera when not used for a prolonged period since they can leak highly corrosive chemicals. For the same reason never mix rechargeables with alkalines, as damaged electrical contacts will make your camera fit for the bin only. Lithium batteries and NiCd or NiMh rechargeables do not leak and can safely be left in place. This will also help preserve the small back-up battery or condenser which is present in almost all digicams and serves to remember the internal time and date.
Since many digicams consume some power even when switched off, recharge NiMh batteries about once a month during long periods of non-use. This will prevent damage through total discharge and ensure the camera's clock has a reliable current supply.
Contrary to NiMh batteries, NiCds suffer from “memory effect” and should be fully decharged before charging as they “remember” their last state of charge and will hold less power after time. Others might argue this memory effect is negligable though and therefore we would advise you not to worry too much about it.
Many batteries contain harmful materials, so dispose of them safely.