American Go E-Journal » 2018 » March

AlphaGo Zero vs. AlphaGo Lee: Game 1

Thursday March 29, 2018

Michael Redmond 9p, hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock, reviews the first game of the new AlphaGo Zero vs. AlphaGo Lee series. In this game, we see AlphaGo Lee “playing very human-like moves,” says Redmond. Zero “builds a big moyo and then turns it into territory,” which Redmond says “doesn’t usually happen in these games. Usually a lot of stuff 2018.03.23_ag-zero-vs-ag-lee-game1-screenshothappens before it gets into (making) territory.”

“Refreshing change of pace with this game,” says Rory Mitchell. “Thanks for the wonderful videos,” says Ryan Smith. “These are the highlight of my week.”

Click here for Redmond’s video commentary, and see below for the sgf commentary. To support this content, please consider joining or renewing your membership in the American Go Association; click here for details.

Video produced by Michael Wanek and Andrew Jackson. The sgf files were created by Redmond, with editing and transcription by Garlock and Myron Souris.
NOTE: The original video was mis-titled as AG Zero vs Master Game 8 (which is forthcoming soon); we apologize for the error.

[link]

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Registration Open for AGHS School Team Tournament

Wednesday March 28, 2018

aghs logo“Registration for the 2018 American Go Honor Society (AGHS) School Team Tournament is now open through April 16th,” says Promotion Head Gabby Su. “This year, the K-12 tournament will be held on Saturday, April 21st and Saturday, April 28th, with two rounds per day. In order to be eligible, teams must be an educational institution where subjects other than go are taught. Players must be under the age of 20 and cannot have graduated from high school. The top three teams from each division will receive prizes, including money, trophies or medals, and custom AGHS T-shirts.” For more information, click here. To register, click here.

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Zhengbokang Tang and Qirui Chen top Salt City tourney

Monday March 26, 2018

Thirty-two players, some traveling from as far as Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, competed in the Salt City 2018.03.26_syracuse-top-boardsTournament on March 24. The 4-round tournament in Syracuse, NY included fifteen students this year, and one of them, 16-year-old Zhengbokang Tang 8d, shared top honors in the Dan division with Qirui Chen 5d, both finishing with 3-1 records and taking home $80 apiece. Yunhan Li 1d claimed the $40 third place prize. Phil Tracy 5k, Bob Crites 6k, and Eric Hookway 9k all w2018.03.26_syracuse-cakeon three games to finish at the top of the SDK division, and Theo Eckert-Budis 15k, Casey Beach 16k, and Noel Kinnear 11k were the first three finishers in the DDK division. Every player was able to take home a prize at the end of the day, with most choosing to select a new go book from Slate and Shell. The tournament’s traditional Problem Cake (left) was easier than usual; three quarters of the players correctly submitted black’s first move.
- Richard Moseson

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San Diego Go Club welcomes Chinese pro Jai Li

Monday March 26, 2018

Last weekend, at the San Diego Go Club’s spring go soiree, Chinese professional Jai Li was welcomed back to the city by more 2018.03.26_Jai.Li.v.Henry.Youthan two dozen attendees. Jai Li, a 5P Chinese professional, and his wife, Ya Wen, last week relocated to southern California from China. They both attended last summer’s Go Congress in San Diego and brought students from their go school in China. The club was honored that he would play a simultaneous exhibition at the soiree against six of the club members. The Lis were accompanied by their son, Bochen, who is a PhD student in Artificial Intelligence at the University of Rochester. Bochen, who is a go enthusiast himself, acted as the official translator for his parents.

The Club was hosting its first event at the newly renovated San Diego Chess Club which is in Balboa Park. The Chess Club is a beautiful facility seating 100 for competition and has a separate lecture room big enough for 30 attendees. Included in the 2018.03.26_Jai.Li.et.albuilding is a large office, several storage areas, bathrooms and a large patio with picnic tables.

While still in the planning stage, the SDGC is hoping to have a series of go lectures by Jai Li and Ya Wen at the chess club on Sunday afternoons. The facility is large enough that Jai can be teaching the stronger dan and kyu players in one room, while Ya is working with the younger and less experienced players in another. Ya Wen is an outstanding go teacher of youth, having developed advanced go teaching methods in China.

- Ted Terpstra, president, San Diego Go Club
photos: (top right) Henry You (left) taking on Jai Li as part of a simultaneous exhibition; photo by Ephraim Borja; (bottom left) Arunas Rudvalis, Ted Terpstra, Jai Li, Bochen Li, Yixian Zhou and Henry You at the San Diego Go Club Spring Soiree; photo by Ted Terpstra.

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Your Move/Readers Write: More on Rob Ryder, including an sgf of Ryder-Go Seigen

Monday March 26, 2018

“Bob Ryder was 48 at the time of this tournament (From the Archives: The First International Amateur Go Tournament 1963),” writes Terry Benson. “He became one of the first western 5-dans and was president of the AGA in the 60s and early 70s. He was also a part of the Bell Labs research team which developed the transistor.”
And in a related note, Adrian Petrescu has transcribed the game between Robert Ryder and Go Seigen, saying “I thought you might find it useful for those who want to add another Seigen game to their databases.”

[link]

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‘The Surrounding Game’ launches on iTunes, Amazon and Google Play

Saturday March 24, 2018

The Surrounding Game, the award-winning documentary on the world of go,  is now available on three additional platforms: 2018.03.24_surrounding-game-platformsiTunes, Amazon Video and Google Play. The film follows America’s top 2018.03.24_surrounding-game-prosyouth players as they compete to become the first Western-certified professionals, and features interviews with many of the world’s most famous players, including Lee Sedol 9p, Nie Weping 9p, Cho Hunhyun 9p, Yoo Changhyuk 9p, Iyama Yuta 9p, Otake Hideo 9p, and the legendary Go Seigen. “We’re excited to be able to offer three new ways to watch the movie” says director Will Lockhart. “This will make it easier for people to discover the film – and to discover go – who might not know about it otherwise.”

Watch on Amazon

Watch on Google Play 

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London Go Centre to Host Not-The-London-Open

Saturday March 24, 2018

London is getting a new go tournament. Sort of. The Not the London Tournament will run May 26th - 28th. Sponsored 2018.03.24 I'm not from Londonby London Go Club and the BGA, and made possible by the T Mark Hall Foundation, the Not the London Tournament is meant to both compliment the year-end London Open, as well as refocus London go to the new London Go Centre.  The Go Centre plans on running the NTLO tourney the weekend of the second May public holiday and the London Open at its normal time, between Christmas and New Year.

The NTLO tourney will also run in parallel with the final stages of identifying the challenger for the British Championship.

Registration for NTLO will soon be available here. Pre-registration may be done via e-mail. A map to/from the London Go Centre can be found here.

Gerry Gavigan, West London Go Club secretary and chair of the London Go Centre, says a yet-as-confirmed go professional will be in attendance:  Catalin Taranu is a possibility, though both Nihon Ki-in and the KBA  have also expressed some interest in sending a pro to the tournament. Details will be updated on the site when finalized.

The McMahon system will be used to pair players. All other details, to include local travel, &  hospitality, fees, and sight-seeing  can be found here.

- Charles “Doc” Sade; graphic from I’m Not from London, which has nothing to do with the go tournament. 

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Go Spotting: Counterpart

Friday March 23, 2018

The opening title montage for Starz’ new scifi, noir-spy series Counterpart is arresting: One black stone on a spotless white2018.04.01-Counterpoint S1-E1 - The Crossing go board separates into two stones, which then divide into numerous black and white stones across an endless board. This theme repeats throughout the rest of the series in both explicit and suggestive patterns, intimating that while the conflict you’re about to witness originates from a rigid black and white ideology, it is best played by the intuitive, shifting strategies of go.

Go players are taught early to “see the whole board.” That is nearly impossible in Counterpart, as the “board” grows and shrinks throughout the series, even as the acquisition and defense (or knowledge of ) territory remain essential.

The first episode, “The Crossing,” opens with a go game between the story’s central protagonist, Howard Silk (J.K. Simmons), and his friend Andrei (Silk is playing black, Andrei white)  in progress at an outdoor cafe in Berlin (above).

And it just gets better from there; there are several references to go and go memorabilia (including books), throughout the season’s episodes.

2018.04.01_Opening Scene_COunterpart_Episode5In episode 5, Shaking the Tree,  Silk –a heretofore weak player– nearly bests Andre (left). This is integral to the story as it tells us something important about this Silk (yes, there is more than one. I did mention this a scifi spy tale, right?) different from his counterpart.

According to cinematographer Martin Rhue, go was always integral to the show’s writers, which is why the game’s motif was incorporated into the title sequence.

Rhue confesses neither he nor Counterpart‘s creator /producer Justin Marks actually play go…yet.

But Rhue said a true go player would stage the board for each shot, as well as instruct the actors on how to handle the stones. Rhue did not know whether past famous games were  staged on the board or just a game from the contracted go player’s personal past.

If your are fond of noirish (scifi) spy tales reminiscent of le Carré’s Smiley’s People, as well as go, Counterpart – which wraps up its first season on Sunday, April 1 — might be just the series for you.
Charles “Doc” Sade

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From the Archives: The First International Amateur Go Tournament 1963

Thursday March 22, 2018

IMG_0203The Nihon Ki-in hosted the first International Amateur Go Tournament in 1963, which was attended by AGA administrator Robert M. Ryder of New Jersey. The packet included in Mr. Ryder’s papers in the archives includes the rules, schedule, and ephemera from what is marked as the first international go tournament held in Tokyo, Japan. Participating countries: Austria, England, West Germany, The Netherlands, The Republic of China, The Republic of Korea, The United States of America, Yugoslavia, and Japan.

Mr. Ryder was very active in the AGA through the 1970s. Anyone who knew him or worked with him is encouraged to contact AGA Archivist Karoline Li at archives@usgo.org.

-photo/report by Karoline Li, AGA Archivist

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NYIG Open Go tournament set for April 21

Wednesday March 21, 2018

Registration is now open for the first New York Institute of Go Open Go Tournament, scheduled for Saturday April 21. Click here2018.03.18_nyig-graphic  to register. The tournament will be held at the New York Institute of Go, 255-05 Northern Blvd, 2FL, Little Neck, NY 11362. Space is limited to 90 players, “so please register early,” says TD Tianhao Xiong, adding “Players of all ages and all strengths welcome!” For more information please check ny-go.org or email td.nyig@gmail.com

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