American Go E-Journal » Go Spotting

Go spotting: PBS’ “Space Time” series

Monday November 5, 2018

go-spotting-thermodynamicsThe Misunderstood Nature of Entropy episode of the PBS “Space Time” series uses a go board as a nice example of thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and average distributions of energy in a system.

They explain that there are macro states with classical observable properties such as temperature, volume, pressure, etc.  These macro states are manifested from many micro states of particles (position, momentum, spin, etc.), and the macro state we observe correlates to the most possible (most statistically occurring) microstates.

If you arrange 180 black stones on a go board, there are 2 times 10 to the 107th power — (2)(10^107) — possible arrangements.  These arrangements represent the possible micro states of particles, and by far most of these states or arrangements of stones look like a macro state of black stones evenly distributed around the board.  It is a very rare micro state to have all the black stones in one corner or filling half the board.  That macro state is observably quite different than the many distributions of stones around the entire board.  Some micro states are so rare, like one chance in (2)(10^107) possibilities, that they never actually occur, just as we don’t suddenly experience all the oxygen in a room randomly collecting against one wall of the room.

- story edited by Bill Chiles; thanks to Freeman Ng for the story tip. 

 

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Go Spotting: Aliens and The Artificial Human; The Wheel of Time

Thursday September 20, 2018

Aliens and The Artificial Human: “Just finished watching the final episode of Ancient Aliens Season 13, episode 13,2018.09.20 Ancient Aliens Season 13, episode 13 writes Michael Bacon. “About twenty or so minutes into the program the focus was on Alpha Go vs Lee Sedol, who was called the World Go Champion. The segment, which was a few minutes in length, then moved 2018.09.16_wheel-of-timeon to Alpha Zero.” The episode is called “The Artificial Human.”

The Wheel of Time: “Maybe it has been reported before,” writes Peter Freedman, “but, in Robert Jordan’s series ‘The Wheel of Time’, often people enjoy a ‘game of stones’, which appears to be go.”

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Go Spotting: 101 Two-Letter Words

Monday September 17, 2018

“During a recent Scrabble game, someone showed me this book,” writes Ted Terpstra.2018.09.16 2-letter words book2018.09.16 2-letter words book cover

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Go Spotting: PBS’ Space Time

Sunday September 16, 2018

Space Time: “Recently the very succesful PBS series ‘Space Time’ did two episodes on entropy, where they used the game of 2018.09.16_space-timego to explain how entropy works,” writes Guillermo Molano. You can find the first episode here.
Thanks also to Daniel Gentry, David Kent and Peter St. John for spotting this.

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Go Spotting: Hardcore Leveling Warrior webtoon

Monday August 20, 2018

Episode 80  of the Hardcore Leveling Warrior webtoon includes an appearance by a character named “Bubble,” a former pro go player whose skill is controlling bubbles.2018.08.20 manga screenshot

Thanks to James Richard Spriggs for the tip!

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Go Spotting: Awkwafina’s “Pockiez”

Wednesday August 1, 2018

American rappertelevision personality, and actress (Crazy Rich Asians and Ocean’s 8) Awkwafina’s new2018.07.11 Awkwafina Pockiez video “Pockiez” features go fairly prominently. NOTE: the video also contains explicit lyrics.

Thanks to Adam VanderHook for passing this along.

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Go Spotting: “The Passions of the Mind,” and “1636: The Ottoman Onslaught”

Thursday July 19, 2018

Stone’s “Passions of the Mind: In Irving Stone’s biographic novel about Sigmund Freud, “The Passions of the Mind,” there is the following sentence, reports2018.07.11_The_Passions_of_the_Mind David Matson: “Sigmund stayed until one in the morning, playing Japanese Go.” It occurs in Section 9 of Book Two: The Longing Soul.

2018.07.11_1636_The_Ottoman_Onslaught“1636: The Ottoman Onslaught”: “Go is mentioned briefly in ‘1636: The Ottoman Onslaught” by Eric Flint,” writes  Mike Goerss. “The novel is in a series of an alternate history where a small American town finds itself in the middle of Germany in 1632. Third to last page, speaking about fighting the Turks as they invade Austria: ‘It is more like a game of go than chess. . . It is more of a game of position than maneuver.’”

“The Next Move”: “AlphaGo Zero, Google’s experimental AI, exists to play Go. There is no awareness, only intelligence.” So begins John Cooper Hamilton’s “The Next Move,” a very short story about AlphaGo in Daily Science Fiction, sent along by Paul Celmer, who published a non-go story in DSF last July, “Spooky Action at a Distance.”

“The Incredible Inventions of Intuitive AI”: Maurice Conti’s “The Incredible Inventions of Intuitive AI” TED talk video mentions AlphaGo beating Lee Sedol, reports Shawn Ray.

 

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Go Spotting: “Escape Plan 2: Hades”

Wednesday July 11, 2018

Sylvester Stallone and Dave Bautista are shown playing go in the trailer for the new film “Escape Plan 2: Hades,” in which they 2018.07.11_stallone-filmmust figure out how to break into the world’s best hidden prison, release their kidnapped team, and make it out alive. Not clear how playing go helps; let us know if you’ve seen it and have the answer.

Thanks to Daniel Chou for flagging this.

 

 

 

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Go Spotting: Milton Keynes pub

Saturday June 23, 2018

“The pubs here rotate their ale and beer and occasionally have special beers and ales brought in for a short period,” reports Jose 2018.06.24_milton-keynes-goSantiago. “The picture here is of one on offer (recently at the Milton Keynes pub where go players meet on Tuesday nights). Not quite go – but it is ‘game of stones’ Fred had a pint and then a half.” Milton Keynes is located about 45 miles north-west of London.

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Go Spotting: SFO Terminal 2

Wednesday June 20, 2018

Philippe Alexis spotted this recently at an exhibit in Terminal 2 at San Francisco Airport. It’s a Maneki neko pair imitating the2018.06.19_art-at-SFO gods Daikoku and Ebisu playing go. One cat holds a wish-granting mallet and mimics Daikoku; the other holds a sea bream, a symbol of good luck, and mimics Ebisu, two of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune in Japan.

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