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This is probably THE most common failure among digital cameras. There's a halfway chance of fixing it yourself, described here: http://camerarepair.blogspot.com/2007/12/fixing-lens-error-on-digital-camera.html
I had the same issue, just turned cam off and back on, error msg gone. My batt is also not holding charge now using cam w/power connected. Have not used cam for a while, do batts go bad from just sitting?