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Hmm... so you would like to contribute? Great. One more member in "DeSmuME team".

First, as Schumi said, you need coding knowledge. More precisely, C++ in the case of DeSmuME.
You also need knowledge about the DS. The best place to acquire that knowledge is GBATek.
It is an almost complete documentation about the GBA and the DS, by the author of NO$GBA.

Then, get a SVN client (under Windows I recommend TortoiseSVN) and checkout the source code from SVN (on sourceforge).
Get Visual Studio (2008 or 2010 beta1) and compile the source code.

Finally, understand the code. Try to understand how stuff works. You can, as zeromus said, try to comment out stuff and see the results on some games.

Once you've understood enough of the code to be able to fix bugs, well... you are ready to be an emu author.
 
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