American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America


Saturday July 31, 2010

Players are beginning to arrive at the 2010 U.S. Go Congress in Colorado Springs, CO. Hundreds are expected for the year’s biggest go event in North America. The website will be updated on an ongoing basis, and the E-Journal will be sent out daily with updates.
- photo by Chris Garlock



Friday July 30, 2010

Wolfram Research, makers of the renowned Mathematica technical and symbolic computing software, announced today that it’s donating ten student editions of Mathematica to be used as US Open prizes at the Colorado Springs U.S. Go Congress, which begins Saturday.  The current plan is to hold a drawing at the prize banquet from among the currently enrolled college students who won or placed in their division of the Open, though some may be used as prizes for other events.  “I am delighted that Wolfram, maker of about the coolest math software there is, has decided to back the US Open,” said AGA Board Member Andy Okun. “They have a proud record of supporting math competitions and other educational activities and it is nice to be in such company.” Mathematica, created originally by physicist and computer scientist Stephen Wolfram, is capable of a huge and complex array of numerical and symbolic calculations, but uses a coding method so general that the user can combine any of the existing methods together or create new ones.  It is widely used in science, industry, government, law, business and economics and its user base includes all of the Fortune 50.


Friday July 30, 2010

Janice Kim 3PProfessional player Janice Kim 3P addressed “stone capturing disease” and other go problems at a weekend go workshop in San Francisco, CA  July 24-25. Students provided game records in advance so that Kim could prepare material geared to the specific needs of the students. Based on the records, Kim discussed blunders (such as losing the game when you are ahead), self-defeating moves (sente moves with obvious responses that don’t provide significant benefit), and “stone capturing disease”. Kim co-authored the popular book series Learn to Play Go, and is one of only a few western women to be recognized as a professional by the Korea Baduk Association. The workshop was organized by Bay Area Go Players Association, which puts on monthly rated tournaments and periodic pro workshops in Northern California.
- Roger Schrag


Thursday July 29, 2010

An elderly man bit the thumb off a 71-year-old foe during a fight over a board game at a Queens senior center, authorities said yesterday. Bok Jin Kim, 74, allegedly began taunting his victim, Sang Lee, as Lee was playing Go — a Chinese game of strategy — with a pal at the Korean American Senior Center in Corona the afternoon of July 15. “Why did you make that move?” Kim allegedly snipped at Lee. “You’re going to lose!” Lee angrily responded, “It’s none of your business,” and the pair started heatedly arguing, law-enforcement sources said. Kim then allegedly grabbed Lee by the shirt, leaned over and chomped down on his victim’s thumb so hard that the tip, including the thumbnail, was severed, the sources said. Lee was rushed to a nearby hospital, where doctors were unable to reattach the piece of thumb, according to the police report. Kim was charged with assault.
- reported by Jessica Simeone in the July 28 edition of The New York Post

Categories: U.S./North America


Wednesday July 28, 2010

Brandon Gress 5d, Sung Yeo 4d and Lee Huynh 1d shared top honors at the July 24 Congress Tune-Up in Chicago, Illinois. There were 29 players, half of whom “came out for pizza, setting a new record,” reports TD Bob Barber. “And some got to show off their I-Pads,” adds Barber.  Results: First Place Dan: GRESS, Brandon 5d, YEO, Sung 4d, HUYNH, Lee 1d; First Place High Kyu: NORMAN, Matthew 9k; First Place Low Kyu:  SEIFRID, Alicia 16k.

Categories: U.S./North America


Monday July 26, 2010

California Sate Senator – and Speaker Pro Tem — Leland Yee came to the San Francisco Go Club on Sunday, July 18th to present Mingjiu Jiang 7P with a Certificate of Recognition from the California State Senate in honor of the Ing Chang-Ki Goe Foundation and their continued sponsorship of the World Youth Goe Championship.  This year’s contestants are both students of Jiang and he will accompany them to Peng Hu, China for the tournament along with Paul Barchilon.  There Jiang will present the Certificate to Ing Ming Hao and Yang Yu Chia of the Ing Foundation at the opening ceremonies of the tournament.
Pictured l-r: Dr. Alfred Lee, Vice-President San Francisco Go Club, Senator Leland Yee, Ph.D., and Mingjiu Jiang 7P; report/photo by Ernest Brown

Categories: U.S./North America


Monday July 26, 2010

The new Empty Sky Go Club t-shirts are now available. “This was designed by our very own Becky and it looks great,” reports club president Steve Colburn. The Hanes Tagless t-shirts in Kelly Green can be pre-ordered now; orders will ship by the end of the September, “just in time for the go tournament season!” adds Colburn. CLICK HERE to order.


Thursday July 22, 2010

Marjorie “Su Co” Hey has been chosen as the AGF’s Teacher of the Year.  An ordained Buddhist nun, she is in good company, joining Honinbo Sansa, the 16th century founder of the Honinbo House, among notable go playing Buddhists.  Hey, who lives in Medford, MA, has been a dedicated go teacher for the past seven years, with go programs at elementary schools, libraries, and Boys and Girls Clubs, often running five or six separate clubs each week.  “For those people who are afraid I am teaching their kids Buddhism, I point out that go was being played at least a thousand years before Buddhism or Christianity were established,” Hey told the E-Journal, “go teaches us to do our best, treat our opponents with respect and to avoid being greedy (the surest way to lose).”   Hey seems never to have been worried about the competitive aspects of the game, and instead delights in teaching and helping beginners.  She is not a strong player herself, with an AGA rank of 18 kyu, but she possesses a special gift – the ability to fascinate and delight children.  Her main interest is in helping her students, and she enjoys seeing their progress. “Ralph St. Louis (age 14) and I played to see if he would be eligible to play in the Massachusetts Go Association (MGA) tournament. Playing even, he won by a half point,’ said Hey.  “The next morning I loaned him my 10 volume set of Level Up and he set to studying it before the Sunday tournament. I entered him as a 20 kyu. He played me the first game and mowed me down. He went on to play a 6 kyu and won and then lost to a 4 kyu. I only won two and lost two. Last night I checked the new ratings and I had gone from 19+ kyu to 18.9 kyu but Ralph went from 20 kyu to 16.6 kyu. WOW!!!! Ralph is more than 2 kyu stronger than me.”  Tom Bahun, a teenaged 2 dan, tells a similar story:  “the first tournament I went to at the MGA was dull and boring, but the next one was run by Su Co, and we had tons of fun.  All the kids had huge smiles on their faces they were  so happy, including me, even though I had lost.  She is all around a great person and a great teacher of go to children.” The Teacher of the Year Award has become quite competitive in recent years, and many excellent teachers are finding themselves on a waiting list for the honor, which includes an all-expenses-paid trip the annual US Go Congress.  Honorable mention goes to Portland go teacher Fritz Balwit, and Colorado teacher David Weiss, who were also nominated for the award this year. Hey will hold a round-table discussion — for those who teach and those who would like to — at the Congress, on Monday Aug. 2 at 5pm.
- Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo: Hey, at center, teaching children at Brooks Elementary School in Medford MA.


Friday July 16, 2010

The American Go Association’s youngest member, 8-month-old Madelyn Terpstra — AGA #18087 – tries out her new go set, a birthday present from proud grandfather Ted Terpstra (AGA #754). Click here for membership info; send your membership stories to us at


Thursday July 15, 2010

Dates for the annual Cotsen Go Tournament – which features over $5,000 in prizes – have just been announced. The tournament, sponsored by Lloyd Eric Cotsen (r) with the American Go Association, will be held September 18-19 at the Los Angeles Center Studios. The tournament also features a the popular go club competition, free buffet lunch both days, game commentary by Yilun Yang 7P, and – unique among tournaments anywhere else in the world – free shoulder massages by professional masseuses. Plus, all entry fees are fully refunded Sunday afternoon, for those who pre-register. Email for more info. photo by Chris Garlock

Categories: U.S./North America