I did have an interesting opportunity to assist a fellow droid builder with some programming issues. While buying some LEDs at a DIY store, I noticed this gentleman purchasing what appeared to me components similar to those used in most R2-D2 units. I struck up a conversation with him, and as it turns out, he is planning to build a BB-8 droid. He wasn't at all familiar with Arduinos and he asked if I'd be willing to help him with programming. As it turns out, he is using a board similar to an Arduino, and his board has a number of jumpers which are not easily identifiable. It takes a bit of research to identify the jumpers and then to program that brand of board.
What I learned: whenever possible, use well-known products. There is a cost savings when using off brands, but there are more resources available with name brand products - more people with experience using them, more support from the manufacturer, and more information online.