I've had some fun dealing with "obsolete" gear and trying to extract old recordings so I can use them. But nothing nearly as difficult as what these guys did to recover recordings of Thomas Edison and others. And no, it was nothing so simple as figuring out how to play an Edison cylinder. That's easy. :)
This story came to me by way of Instapundit, which has a lot of techie and space oriented goodness in it. If the libertarian politics of the proprietor are a problem for you, just skip those links.