This morning, I had a lengthy Facebook chat conversation with none other than Bowie Poag, the creator of the Propaganda tiles. He was flattered that someone remembers his work from 20 years ago.

I found him through a group for Chicago area Diversi-Dial users. Way back when, a Diversi-Dial (or DDial) was a remarkably versatile chat system. The host was an Apple ][ computer, with all 7 (8?) internal slots populated with dial-up modems. The hoster literally had 7 different telephone lines coming into their homes, one for each modem. You’d connect to a dedicated number, and some switching mechanism would try all the modems to see if one was free. Then you had an IRC-type multi-user chat system.

But I digress. I’ll write about DDials some other time.

Bowie seemed genuinely shocked that anyone remembers his project, nearly 20 years after its creation. I told him I’ve been carrying around a copy of Propaganda on various flash drives – and now Dropbox – ever since I found them.

I was hoping he could provide me with a definitive set of the tiles – direct from the source. He thinks heĀ  might have them stashed on an old computer that’s not currently in use. He’s going to do some digging and see what he can find.

He was very pleasant and helpful. I look forward to discussing my Propaganda For Plasma project with him in the future.

The downside is that I’m now committed to seeing this thing through. I’ve been slacking off working on it for the past month or two, devoting my time to various KDE patches, which always expand into larger and more complex projects than how they originally appear. But I’m continuing to learn and sharpen my skills. My latest patch got more user interface comments than technical error comments. But these all take time.

It was a kick to talk with Bowie. I’m glad he approves of my project.

More to follow!

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