Recently CBS news did a segment about cloth diapers that was not entirely favorable (see it here). The cloth diapering community was up in arms about it so one of the anchors of the show decided to take on a 30 day cloth diaper challenge. She blogged about it here and has actually admitted to be "converted."
Here's the video:
CBS News: Pros and Cons of Cloth Diapers
It goes through all the different types of cloth diapers, from basic prefolds to all-in-ones, and discusses cleaning as well. (please ignore the gift giving segment at the end, lol). But if you're new to cloth diapering, this can give you a basic overview of the types. And trust me, there are very few moms who cloth diaper that never use disposables, so don't let them guilt you.
If you're considering trying it, I can answer any of your questions. And I can promise you, it's not as scary (or messy) as it seems. :)