The father of the computer gaming revolution, Nolan Bushnell, will be the keynote speaker at the first US International Go Symposium, on August 4-5, 2012. The Symposium will bring together go scholars from around the world to explore educational, cultural, historical, literary, artistic, scientific and technological aspects of the game. Bushnell has called go a “wonderfully rich and powerful game” and his “favorite game of all time.”
When he founded a pioneering computer company in 1972, Bushnell selected a go term, atari, for the company’s name. Atari’s game Pong became the first commercially successful computer game, opening the door to modern computer gaming. Organized by Peter Shotwell, noted go scholar and author, the symposium will take place on August 3rd and 4th during the first weekend of the American Go Association’s (AGA’s) 28th US Go Congress in Black Mountain, North Carolina. The International Go Federation is providing seed funding for the symposium. For more information about the Symposium, or to submit papers or proposals, contact Peter Shotwell firstname.lastname@example.org
The International Mind Sports Association has announced that the second World Mind Sports Games (WMSG) will be held August 9-23 at the Lille Palais in Lille, France. International Go Federation (IGF) vice president Thomas Hsiang reports that the second WMSG will be an all-amateur event. “Once again, we will be depending upon donations to support sending our U.S. team to this prestigious competition,” says American Go Association President Allan Abramson. Due to the lateness in confirming the event site, the IGF will not be participating on as large a scale as in the first WMSG. The European Go Federation has been asked to organize the event. Supporters donated about $15,000 to send the U.S. team to the first Mind Games in China in 2008. “Can we ask you to match or exceed this amount for this Summer’s games?” asks Abramson. Use the “donate” button on the AGA website, to contribute or get and use the AGA credit card.
Bay Area Go Players Association held the third annual Go Expo Day on March 11 in Oakland, CA, and once again it was a big success. Over 50 people from diverse backgrounds converged on the Oakland Asian Cultural Center to learn how to play go, pick up a free 9×9 go set and Way to Go booklet, and watch games in the monthly AGA ratings tournament taking place in the room next door.
“We need more teachers!” exclaimed Jay Chan, Go Expo Day co-organizer, as inquisitive adults and children poured into the room and filled all available seats. A few tournament players heeded the call for help, generously pausing their rated games and stepping in to teach until more go instructors could be brought in.
Teacher Ernest Brown summed the day up nicely when he commented, “It was just so great to see so much interest and enthusiasm for go.” Based on the success of this and previous outreach events, Bay Area Go Players Association will hold the next Go Expo Day during the September monthly AGA ratings tournament instead of waiting until 2013. “The great teaching supplies available from the American Go Foundation store make it a lot easier to teach go to beginners at our regular monthly tournaments,” explained co-organizer Roger Schrag. Photos by Steve Burrall and Roger Schrag.
Guo Juan’s Internet Go School is currently accepting enrollment for group classes for the 2012 second term, which begins April 28/29. “The group class participants will also receive a 20% discount on our Audio Lectures membership,” says Guo Juan. The school’s teaching faculty includes Guo Juan 5P, Jennie Shen 2P and Young Sun 8P and Mingjiu Jiang 7P.
Eighteen youngsters competed in the March 3 Colorado Youth Go Tournament at the Eloise May library in Denver. Playing strengths ranged from 4-dan to 40-kyu and ages from 5 – 14. Matthew Harwit 4D won the dan section, Tim Chang 20k won the kyu section and Andrew Huang won the majority of his games, and was the 5-and-under Colorado state champion. David Weiss and Alex Yavich were the TDs.
Frank Fukuda has tendered his resignation, effective immediately, as the Nihon Ki-in’s representative to the Seattle Go Center, a responsibility he accepted in 1995 as a condition for the Nihon Ki-in to create the Go Center. Mr. Fukuda’s resignation comes on the heels of an official letter from the Nihon Ki-in to the Seattle Go Center indicating their intention to sell the Go Center premises in the near future. The Seattle Go Center Board of Directors is currently determining how to respond to this notice.
Andrew Gross, Chairman of the Board of the Go Center, said “The Board of Directors wishes to express our deepest gratitude to Mr. Fukuda, whose name is synonymous not only with the Seattle Go Center, but with the broader Seattle area Go community. His dedication and commitment to spreading the joy of Go through teaching, community outreach, and organized competitive play has laid an unshakable foundation which will support the Seattle Go Center into the next decade and beyond. We are grateful that Mr. Fukuda has indicated that his resigning as representative of the Nihon Ki-in will not prevent his continued involvement with the Go Center.” photo by Brian Allen: Frank Fukuda at Bunka no Hi Culture Day, Seattle
After two weekends of fierce competition, Mingming Yin 1P of New York emerged as the champion of the Young Kwon National Online Tournament (YKNOT). Mingming Yin was the only player to win all five rounds in the tournament, which was hosted on KGS. Andy Liu 7D took second place, with third place going to last year’s YKNOT champion Zhanbo Sun, both with 4 wins. Other division winners included Nick Jhirad 6D, Meng Lu 4D, Louie Liu 1k, Stephen Allen 6k, and Julian Erville 8k. TDs were Karoline Burrall, Chris Kirschner, Dennis Wheeler, Tina Zhang, and Kevin Hwang. “Thanks very much to Young Kwon of Pearl River, NY for sponsoring a successful tournament, and also to KGS for hosting and KGS admins for announcements and providing tournament support!” says Burrall. photo from the Strong Player’s Open at the 2011 U.S. Go Congress, which Lin won.
With fundraising efforts underway to send the U.S. team to the Second World Mind Sports Games, American Go Association President Allan Abramson has an easy way for anyone to help. “Just apply for the AGA credit card and as soon as you use it once, the AGA gets $50!” CapitalOne also donates a percentage of all charges on each card, which has already generated $1,500, but with over $15,000 raised in 2008 to send the team to the first Mind Games, there’s a way to go yet this year. Another way is to donate directly to the AGA: click here to do so easily online. “Please help,” Abramson urges, “Whatever you can do makes a difference and is appreciated.”
The final rounds of the Young Kwon National Online Tournament (YKNOT) will be played Saturday, March 10 on KGS in the AGA Tournaments Room. After three exciting rounds of play, seven players of the YKNOT 2, sponsored by Young Kwon, remain undefeated. The three undefeated players of the open section are Zhanbo Sun, a 2-dan professional and champion of last year’s YKNOT, Mingming Yin 1- dan professional and winner of the Strong Players Open of the 2011 Go Congress, and Yue Zhang 7D. Other undefeated players include Meng Lu, Yunxuan Li, April Ye, and Julian Erville. “Special thanks to the tournament directors, Young Kwon for sponsoring, and KGS for hosting and tournament support!” says AGA Tournaments Coordinator Karoline Burrall. 3/11: Updated: Yue Zhang 7D was the third undefeated top player, not Andy Liu 7D, a past winner of the North American Ing Masters tournament and US representative overseas, who was 2-1.
Go players of all levels will be able to play or watch top-level play April 21-22 when the Wisonet Go Club hosts both a North American Ing Masters (NAIM) Qualifier and a self-paired tournament at the Madison Suites Hotel in Somerset, New Jersey. The NAIM Qualifier will provide high-level competition for strong dan players, as well as qualification points for the 2012 North American Ing Masters Tournament, which will be held at the US Go Congress in Black Mountain, NC in August. Meanwhile, players of all strengths will be able to play in a simultaneous self-paired tournament organized by Wisonet Go Club President and Tournament Director Ronghao Chen. To be eligible for the Qualifier, players must US citizenship or a green card, full AGA membership for the past year, and have lived in the US for six of the last 12 months. Players in this section may attend one or both days to play AGA-rated games. Players who would like to compete in the Qualifier must register by April 12; the registration fee is $45. For the self-paired tournament, the fee is $35 for both days, $22 for Saturday only, and $15 for Sunday only. Tournament prizes will be based on attendance after venue costs. The Somerset Madison Suites Hotel is also offering a special rate for visiting go players at the tournament. Click here for details, tournament registration form, and directions. Contact Ronghao Chen with any questions at email@example.com.