The Microreader kit comes with pretty good, colorful instructions. For the sake of this instructable, an IC socket will be used to promote easy removal of the chip for programming. An IC socket is a bed the integrated circuit (IC) can sit in. This way you can take it out and program it or pet it if you want. You can get it from the Makezine Store.
You can use the MiniPOV as a programmer. No it's not a cheap trick to get more people buying them -- using the MiniPOV to program the Microreader is actually cheaper than buying a standard IC programmer. Alternatively, you can make your own programmer using this instructable.
Using an IC in this project makes it more difficult (annoying) to put together. I bought a cheap 20 pin IC from Radioshack, which I've heard isn't very good. It works fine for this project though. Also, you may consider an IC because this eliminates the possibly of accidentally destroying your IC.
This kit is great for soldering beginners. To learn the basics of soldering check out this great guide by noahw. Also, here's a good video tutorial from the MAKE blog.
Idealy, you can put this little reader on all sorts of stuff. Eventually this guide will illustrate how to temporarily attach this to a piece of clothing.
Step 1: What you get and what you need.
What you get:
Battery Holder (with screw)
What you need:
Soldering iron with a fine tip
2 AA batteries
and if you want to program it using a programmer get a 20-pin IC socket.
The pictured holder isn't 100% necessary but it may help. I found it easier to just do this on a tabletop.