ah, the old days....
before Xenarc, Lilliput, and the host of NTSC LCDs came onto market, the only way to get any kind of visual feedback was through one of those. Instructions on how to interface these with any computer abound on the web.
You're gonna want to get a VFD, they are the most readable during the day and night. But, thats only if you want to be able to read it at night. If you dont care, then go with an LCD.
Check out www.matrixorbital.com for the displays. In the old days, people would get 4x40 (4 lines x 40 characters) and display ID3 tag information using a winamp plugin. This may be something you want to consider.