I got here curious about MAME through Wikipedia. MAME was always one of those things that I was meaning to get to. And I did get around to checking it out in December 2009.
MameWorld is my primary place to check for news updates regarding the evolution of the emulator and the digital preservation of not just the games but ALL parts of arcade video gaming history.
And it just got better when MESS got combined with MAME, so to speak. This is all a part of computing history. It's a history that really took off when microcomputers became affordable for home use. some users took that home technology to replicate other computer systems and so forth. It's applied knowledge and technology in its purest form.
I personally watched it all evolve. And now it's able to not just be preserved but replicated for future generations of geeky human beings to experience for themselves.
In a century we'll all be gone due to the limits of human mortality. But that knowledge that's archived will live on. That's immortality akin to classic literature that has survived the ebb and flow of time itself.
That is a huge philosophical turn on for me. :-)
It makes me wonder what didn't survive, like nitrate film stock crumpling into dust.