I think Smart Albums are still one of the coolest features in iPhoto. And after you watch this movie from my iPhoto '11 Essential Training, I think you might become a fan too.
There's more than four hours of training presented in a series of short movies that you can watch as many times as you want until you feel comfortable with each particular technique. It's truly learning at your own pace. Even if you've never used Lynda.com before, there are free movies that you can view right now: Working in Full Screen Mode, and Hiding Photos.
I receive lots of mail about how much people like learning software via my titles on Lynda.com. If you're ready to dig into iPhoto, or want to give a loved one the gift of knowledge, then take a look at iPhoto '11 Essential Training.