First things first. Why even bother making an Arduino? I am not much for them in the first place, however I must admit that they have made my life very easy during project work. So all in all I can’t really say that I hate the Arduinos. Not anymore.
The main reason I didn’t like them was that I fell ‘overtaken’ – why study hard for so long time if everybody can just take an Arduino and do all the fancy projects? Then I am stuck with the PIC chips and my knowhow, but I can’t get the job done.
That was the past. As time have passed I figured that it was not so much about doing the right solution with the right equipment but to make it easy and accessible to people. And the Arduinos does just that. They deliver a complete development platform, a complete IDE and LOTS of tutorials. They are well documented and – open source.
A whole other reason for making my own arduino board is that I have about 200 Atmega168V (the low power version of the 168) sitting around doing nothing. The 168V is only 8MHz but they should go as low as 2.8V but is still 5V tolerant. This chip is ideal for battery power! Even better, they should interface with the Arduino IDE seamlessly because they behave just like the Arduino Pro Mini running at 8MHz and 3.3V. Although it does run on 5V in my design.