Embedded applications are nowdays rarely completely standalone. You’ll usually have the system communicate with something, usually a computer. The easiest way to do so is with UART, since there are several USB to UART converter ICs out there such as the FT232 from FTDI Chip.
You still need to configure the UART module of the microcontroller to work. For the MSP430, I’ve added quite a lot of practical information on how to get UART running. Take a look at the UART chapter in my tutorial:
The information will allow you to communicate with a computer using the USB port
I just announced my first release of an open source MSP430 UART driver. If you want to get started using
the MSP430 UART without all the hassles, feel free to give it a try. More information Here
My company’s website www.argenox.com is now the main resource for MSP430 related tutorial. We have greatly improved the information for the MSP430 UART.