The mamedev.org website literally shows the year and date next to every single release, albeit not on the latest release page itself since it's shown on the home page anyway. If MAME 0.37b5 is newer than version 0.239, Windows 98 must be a hell of a lot newer than Windows 11.
In August 2001 I didn't have a PS2 yet (because they were still hovering around a thousand "pacific peso" AUD and the games were $100 each), I had a 200 MHz overclocked Pentium 166 with 32MB of RAM as my main PC and didn't even know what MAME was until 0.58 (and even then, I didn't really get into MAME until 0.61). however I did have NESticle, SNES9x and PSEmu Pro, having been around console emulators since 1998. The Pentium system, with its S3 ViRGE 'graphics decelarator', was able to run Tekken 1 in PSEmu Pro at roughly 5 fps; Tekken 2 didn't run in PSEmu at all, and Tekken 3 would go in-game but randomly freeze. I had to go to the arcade to get my Tekken Tag fix; luckily it was still in just about every single arcade known to mankind back then.
Adding to JD's history lesson:
- The Australian dollar was at its lowest exchange rate in history, dropping to 48 US cents
- Metallica were on the brink of breaking up after twenty years, bassist Jason Newsted "fookin' left the band"
- When MAME 0.53 came out, Windows XP hadn't even been released yet (OEMs would get Windows XP twelve days later; retail had to wait until October)