Hey all. I wrote up a quick bit of code today to use a '595 shift register. It's a binary counter that counts from 0 to 255 and then restarts. Code:
Basically, you set up the circuit as follows: (all pin numbers are in regards to the '595 chip, information available at http://www.msarnoff.org/chipdb/74595)
Q0-Q7 (pins 1-7, 15): LED to ground, with suitable resistor in series.
GND (pin 8): ground, obviously.
Vcc (pin 16): Vcc, obviously :P
MR (pin 10): Vcc.
OE (pin 13): ground.
DS (pin 14): P1.0 on the LaunchPad
RCK (pin 12): P1.1 on the LaunchPad
SCK (pin 11): P1.2 on the LaunchPad
What the code does is count from 0 to 255, with each count setting the latch pin (RCK, P1.1) low to prevent flashing of the LEDs while shifting bits, and then calls shiftOut(), which breaks the value down into bits, writing them out to DS one at a time, while pulsing SCK low-high in the process to allow the bits to be shifted out. After that, the RCK is brought high again, allowing the LEDs to light in unison. Then there is a delay of 25000 clock cycles to allow the count to be followed by the human eye.
Thanks for reading, and keep tweaking.