Enter Energia - an open source project which allows you to program the MSP430 just like you would an Arduino Sketch.
Link to the Energia forum at 43oh.com
Link to the Energia page at Github
There are even quite a few libraries already ported over from Arduino, including the Servo library, Serial LCD and several others.
This is pretty exciting. For just a dollar or two you can easily integrate an MSP430 chip into your design. A MSP430G2553 20 pin DIP has 16kb RAM and 16 I/O ports. For simpler applications that don't require a lot of RAM, this could be a very nice low power, low cost alternative to an Atmel chip. Just pop the chip into your launchpad, program it, then pop it into your breadboard or PCB and you are ready to go.
For simpler applications, you could even choose the lower powered TI MSP430 value line chips that cost even less. In some cases, it might make more sense to use multiple low cost microcontrollers vs. single higher performance Atmel chips.
I'm going to give Energia a try tomorrow and will post my results. I'm hoping Energia doesn't dissapoint.