If you can't bear to cough up a buck or two for even the cheapest little tripod to stabilize your table-top images (or are just too lazy to carry one around), this awesome tip is for you: With a few strategic bends, you can fashion a stable stand for a compact camera from a lowly paper clip. Originally "designed" as an iPhone stand, the reincarnated paper clip works great for both horizontal and vertical shots (though the vertical orientation may take a little bit of balancing, depending on the heft of your camera). I actually tried this trick at home and it works a treat. It's perfect for those super slim ultracompacts that won't really stand up on their own.
Check out the inventor's video: