Love-struck hacker proposes using 'Bejeweled'

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JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (AP) -- Hiding a ring in a bouquet just wasn't enough when a computer programmer decided to pop the question.

Bernie Peng reprogrammed Tammy Li's favorite video game, "Bejeweled," so a ring and a marriage proposal would show up on the screen when she reached a certain score.

Li reached the needed score -- and said yes.

Word of the romantic feat in December filtered out after Peng, a financial software programmer, posted details on his blog. The reprogramming was a tricky task and took him a month.

"I thought it was pretty cool, in a nerdy way," Peng told The Star-Ledger of Newark.

The couple plan to marry over Labor Day weekend, and PopCap, the Seattle company that makes "Bejeweled," will fly the couple to Seattle as part of their honeymoon.

"Most video game companies would frown on people manipulating their games," said Garth Chouteau, a spokesman for PopCap.

"But it won him a woman. As a bunch of geeks, we have to say, 'Bernie, hats off to you.' "

The company is also supplying copies of "Bejeweled" to hand out as favors to the wedding guests. In the hugely popular game, players score points by swapping gems to form vertical and horizontal chains.
 
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