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Your Move/Readers Write: The Einstellung Effect

Saturday September 22, 2018

“In response to Bill Cobb’s message of the importance to play moves out of our comfort zone (The Empty Board: Philosophical Reflections on Go #10 9/19 EJ),” writes Eric Osman, “I offer the following: A 7d player on kgs alerted me to the concept of Einstellung, which is the propensity we have for solving a problem in life (or on the go board) by using the methods we have learned, even though for this particular problem there’s a better way!”

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Jasiek releases new book on endgame

Friday September 21, 2018

Robert Jasiek’s new book “Endgame 2 – Values” is now available. The result of two years of work and research, Jasiek says 2018.09.16_Endgame_2_Coverthe book “teaches every relevant, basic aspect of endgame evaluation systematically, clearly and in detail.” It explains modern and traditional endgame theories, the microendgame, and the impact of scoring. “We evaluate positions, follow-up positions and moves so that all their values are consistent and related,” says Jasiek. “The theory is well applicable to every endgame position and move, approximates absolute truth and is supported by many examples.” The 260-page book is available in both  printed (EUR 26.50) and PDF (EUR 13.25) formats. Click here for a sample and here to purchase.

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Capture go app for iPhone

Thursday September 20, 2018

Image-1There is a new capture go app for Apple devices, designed for the very young.  “I created this app for my six-year-old grandson who was showing interest in my go playing, but was not yet mature enough to understand ko fights, trade-offs, and sacrifice,” says developer Tim Hoel.  The app walks users through rules and basic concepts, all with spoken narration.  Beginners can see examples of how situations play out, and then find solutions themselves. Simple lessons build from there, of which there are several, and then you can play against the computer.  It has three difficulty levels, so players can move up against the machine.  At level three, it is smart enough to occasionally catch even an experienced player.  Level one stays easy enough to keep young kids from getting frustrated.  Lessons can be reviewed at any point, and the rules are printed out in a separate tab as well. As this is capture go, and not regular go, one has to keep playing until one or more stones  are captured.  Passing is not an option, which means you will need to fill in your own eye if there are no other moves. Young players likely won’t make it to this point anytime soon, but when they do, it is arguable they are ready for full go. “Capture Go is a great way to get started because the rules are a little simpler and the goal is easy to understand, but it still teaches a lot about recognizing liberties, contact fights, forcing sequences, and planning ahead,” adds Hoel.  iPhone and iPad users can find the free app in the App Store, there is no Android version. -Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor

 

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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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The Empty Board: Philosophical Reflections on Go #10

Wednesday September 19, 2018

by William Cobb2018.09.16_empty-go-board-with-bowls-and-stones-water swirl

A big part of life is experiencing things you have never experienced before: flying in a plane, hiking to a mountain top, being in a snow storm, visiting a country where you don’t speak the language. We think of such things as enriching our lives, making life more interesting, and fun besides. There’s an obvious parallel to this in go: the game has a virtually infinite range of possibilities, but some players seem resistant to getting outside their already familiar circumstances. There are a lot of things that many of us have seldom if ever experienced: playing tenuki in response to an approach move in the opening, knowing what to do when the opponent attaches to a 3-4 point stone, being confident about the best way to continue after the first dozen or so moves, consistently judging the status of small groups accurately, knowing where to invade common positions, etc. In this regard, we’re like people who are perfectly happy to have never seen the ocean or a snow-capped mountain. The world is full of amazing and wonderful things; we’re happy to spend time, money, and energy exploring and becoming familiar with as many of them as we can. We should have the same attitude toward playing go. Just playing won’t get you to a lot of the amazing amount of beauty and fascination the game offers. You’ve got to get outside the familiar patterns you already know. This is why it makes no sense to refuse to read books, take lessons, or study the games of stronger players. There’s a truly amazing world out there. We need to spend some time and effort exploring it and not just stay inside the familiar area we already know. Don’t just buy books—read them. Don’t just look at the results of pro games—play through them. Don’t just play the same opening moves—try some you’ve not used before. You’ll discover that go is even more fun than you thought.
photo by Phil Straus; photo art by Chris Garlock

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Go Classified: Demo board; Gobans & stones for sale; go teachers wanted

Wednesday September 19, 2018

Demo board wanted: “I’ve been scouring the Internet for one of those old, large, magnetic go boards that can be stood up on an easel,” writes Dirk Knemeyer. “I have learned that they are no longer easily available because the teaching methods in go have largely moved on from these large easels to computers and projectors. It seems likely that there are unused, unwanted magnetic go boards in closets or attics of go clubs around the U.S.” and Knemeyer is interesting in buying one. Reach him at dirk.knemeyer@gmail.com

Gobans & stones for sale: large lot of gobans, standard/undersize/custom boards, agate and Yunzi stones, portable complete sets, all for $300.  Local pickup in West Virginia only, no shipping, near I-81 less than two hours west of the Baltimore and Washington DC beltways.  Email gerratt5@aol.com or call 304-820-3167 and leave message anytime for photos.  Cash, Paypal, or credit/debit card OK.

Go teachers wanted: An Oakton VA family is currently looking for a teacher for a 5-year old beginner; contact Mr. Zhang at zhiyuanz@gmail.com; a Fairfax County, Virginia non-profit weekend Chinese-language school is looking for a go teacher for a class with 6-12 students; contact Ms. Liu at 6yichunzi@gmail.com

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AGA chapters reaping rewards of building membership

Monday September 17, 2018

AGA chapters have been accumulating “tons of points” since the launch of the Chapter Reward Points program, reports Steve Colburn. The program operates similarly to an airlines or credit card rewards program; chapters are awarded points when AGA members affiliated with that chapter do things that earn points – sign up as full members of the AGA, play rated games, etc  – which can then be used by chapters to get reimbursed for activities related to the promotion of American go. “For example, if you have 35,000 points, that covers your chapter membership for the year,” Colburn says. Click here for program details, including that the formula for calculating point awards gives a bonus award to small and medium chapters to encourage their growth.  “I hope that your local chapter can benefit from this program,” Colburn added.

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Your Move/Readers Write: Where to score a scoresheet; Connecting to other go players

Monday September 17, 2018

Where to score a scoresheet: In response to Glen Hart’s query about “Where to score a scoresheet?”, Jim Hurley sent 2018.09.16_Go Game Record copythis link where he’s posted some printable game recording files.

How many Nakayama? “I’m wondering how can I find out how many books Nakayama Noriyuki  wrote in Japanese,” wrote  Kent Olsen recently. Richard Hunter sent along this Japanese Wikipedia link, which includes books and essays Nakayama authored, as well as those he edited or ghost-wrote for others, like Kajiwara and Takemiya.

Connecting to other go players:
David in Poughkeepsie recently posted that he’s looking for other nearby go players. “I find one current AGA member in Poughkeepsie and two others lapsed within the last five years,” says AGA Chapters Coordinator Bob Gilman. “If David is willing to share his email address, I would be happy to write to email these individuals, tell them of his interest in playing, and provide his email address to them should they wish to get in touch with him. I am happy to provide such a service to other go players interested in making contact with other players in their area.” Reach Gilman at bobgilman.aga@gmail.com

 

 

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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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NC championship set for Sept 22

Sunday September 16, 2018

The North Carolina State Go Champion will be determined in a day-long tournament on September 22 at Umstead State Park in north Raleigh. Competitors from across the state will vie for the title, with prizes and trophies awarded in multiple divisions. The State Go Champion wins a cash prize along with a trophy. All AGA members are eligible to play. However, to be awarded the title of “North Carolina State Champion” you must be an amateur go player who resides in North Carolina at least 50% of the year. Students are eligible.

PREREGISTRATION IS REQUIRED for first round pairing and an early start. To participate in the first round you must register before 8:00 PM Friday, September 21st. This is an AGA rated tournament; you must be an AGA member to play. Register here.

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