If you want/need to compile a program on ARM but are not lucky enough to have the hardware available QEMU can still help you. Aurélien Jarno has an excellent description of how to do this. It is still valid today, even if you want to install sid instead of etch, first install etch then upgrade.
The only thing he omits is the need to start a getty on /dev/ttyAMA0 when you use -nographics with a console on ttyAMA0. Other then that everything goes terribly smooth.
Apparently emulating ARM on a recent machine is supposed to be even faster then a real ARM. I have no idea if this is true, but I still find it slow... Makes me think twice about considering a Thecus N2100 or so as my home server.