American Go E-Journal » Tools: books, software & hardware

Hinoki Press Founder Chris Greene Dies

Sunday February 22, 2015

Hinoki Press founder Chris Greene died last Friday. Greene, who had cancer, died at home in Libertyville, Illinois. He is survived by his wife, 2015.02.22_HinokiPressWebsite1Vicky, and his daughters, Melissa and Elizabeth. “I was lucky enough to work with Chris doing a little copy editing on some of Hinoki’s books, and found him to be a gentleman and a friend to the go community,” said AGA president Andy Okun. “The books he published represent a lasting contribution to the game and its enjoyment.”

A long-time go player, Greene started the go book publishing company in 2006 after retiring from his career as a programmer and published 18 go books before selling it late last year to Go Game Guru (Go Game Guru Buys Hinoki Press, Will Keep Titles in Print 11/12/2014 EJ). “Chris made an immense contribution to the body of English language go literature in a relatively short time,” said Go Game Guru’s David Ormerod. “He was incredibly modest about his achievements and stoic about his illness. When I last spoke to him, on Thursday, he was primarily concerned that the material that he’d worked hard to have translated and published in English remain available to future generations of go players. His motto for Hinoki Press was, ‘always carry a go book in your hand.’ We will miss our friend and fellow go player and will do everything we can to honor his wishes.”

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Macworld Reviews Go Apps

Wednesday February 4, 2015

Macworld senior contributor Kirk McElhearn provides a terrific overview of go apps on his January 31 Improve your game of Go (or just keep 2015.02.04_smartgo-playerplaying) with this collection of apps column. “If you want to play Go, or want to improve your game, there are a number of excellent iOS apps that can help you learn how to play and try to master the game. Here are the best ones,” writes McElhearn. McElhearn writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville

New Joseki, Endgame Books from Robert Jasiek

Tuesday January 20, 2015

Robert Jasiek, German 5D and author of eight go books aiming to clarify various aspects of the game for kyu players, has released his ninth2015.01.18_Endgame_1_Cover_small and tenth instructional books. With Endgame 1 – Fundamentals Jasiek begins a study of the last phase of the game, where “most moves of a scored game belong,” he writes. Most endgame instruction focuses on calculating the value of each remaining sequence. Jasiek takes a more strategic approach. Have you ever wondered how to avoid premature or worthless endgame moves? How can you prepare for the end earlier in the game? Jasiek looks at these considerations while also delving into other strategic factors such as forcing moves, timing, sente/gote and importance of reading. These principles are reinforced with 229 problems. Click to view the table of contents or some sample pages. Volume Two will address how to calculate the value of endgame plays.

2015.01.18_EasyLearningJoseki_Cover_smallJasiek describes his fourth book on josekis, Easy Learning – Joseki, as a summary of his three-volume joseki series. It is intended as the first or second book on the topic for the aspiring new player. Each of its 196 pages addresses a specific joseki or topic in simple bite-size lessons. Jasiek begins by discussing a dozen or so of the most common patterns, then begins his standard approach of interspersing one- or two-page essayson topics such as “Why To Cut,” “What Is Efficiency?” and “What Group To Defend?” Click to view the table of contents or some sample pages.

These two books are worthy additions to Jasiek’s growing collections of books for aspiring mid-level players. Don’t expect any “New Moves” or groundbreaking strategic concepts, but Jasiek’s books present familiar concepts that appear well-founded in standard thinking. They are organized in a way that is thoughtful and easy to follow. Some of the brief essays seem especially useful in their simplicity and clarity. If you find other mid-level books overly problem-focused and want more explanatory content, have a look at Jasiek’s growing catalog.
- Roy Laird, EJ book review editor

Registration Opens for 2015 Osaka Go Camp

Monday January 19, 2015

The 2015 Osaka Go Camp is set for June 28 – July 18, supported by the Kansai Kiin and the Osaka University of Commerce. The camp offers 2015.01.18_okasa-group_photointensive training by Kansai-Kiin pros, the opportunity to play go inside the Kiin with pros, play against top amateur players, former inseis, sightseeing to major historical cities like Kyoto and Nara. A discount of 5.000 JPY is available for students who pay the deposit before February 28. Email osaka.go.2015@gmail.com for more info or reservations.
photo: 2014 Osaka Go Camp participants

Your Move/Readers Write: Incredible Go Stones

Monday January 19, 2015

“Want to see some incredible go stones?” writes Peter Freedman. “Check out this link.” Exotic Go Stones offers “Semi-precious Go Stones for the2015.01.18_malachite11 Serious Collector,” made out of everything from black and white onyx to Botswana Agate, Carnelian, Turquoise, Malachite (right), Jasper and more.

Go Books Now Available on Mac

Thursday January 15, 2015

SmartGo’s Go Books is no longer limited to the iPad and iPhone: you can now also read your books on the Mac. “And more importantly, the 2015.01.15 GoBooksinfrastructure is in place for a future Android version,” says SmartGo’s Anders Kierulf. You can continue to buy books using in-app purchase on iOS, “or you can buy books directly, avoiding Apple’s 30% cut, thus leaving more money for go writers and publishers.” Go Books on the Mac can also open SGF files and display them in book view. You can then save and edit the resulting gobook file to create your own annotated games. Click here to download the Mac version of Go Books. Two more books will be added soon, for a total of 99 books: “Invasions” by Iwamoto Kaoru 9 dan, and “Honinbo Tournament — The Early Years” by John Fairbairn. “Invincible is a treat on the iPad, but full-screen on your Mac takes it to a new level. Enjoy!” says Kierulf.

Deadline extended for GoGameGuru/AGA BadukTV Holiday Membership Promotion

Sunday January 11, 2015

The special offer of two months of free access to BadukTV English has just been extended through January 31. Anyone who joins, renews or extends 2014.12.02_Watch-Baduk-TV-in-Englishtheir membership with the AGA between now and then will receive two months of free access to BadukTV English thanks to a joint effort of the AGA, GoGameGuru and BadukTV. Baduk TV English takes the best of the 24-hour Korean cable channel Baduk TV, with lessons, game commentary and problems analyzed by professionals, and adds English subtitles.  There are several hundred hours of material in the library already and new material all the time. After joining or renewing, click here to take advantage of the offer.

American Go Yearbook 2014 Member’s Edition Collection Released

Wednesday January 7, 2015

The American Go Yearbook 2014 Member’s Edition Collection has just been released. The annual compilation is one of the benefits of 2015.01.02_member's edition releasedmembership in the American Go Association, collecting the content of the Member’s Edition of the American Go E-Journal, the largest English language go publication in the world. “We appreciate member support of the AGA and hope that our members will find this collection a valuable and useful resource,” said EJ Managing Editor Chris Garlock. Click here for details on AGA membershipNew this year (just added): all 2014 sgf files in a handy downloadable zip file.

Each week the E-Journal delivers original content from a team of contributors that now includes Michael Redmond 9P, Myung-wan Kim 9P, Yilun Yang 7P, Guo Juan 5P, longtime teacher Yuan Zhou 7D, the inimitable Kazunari Furuyama, as well as new US professionals Gansheng Shi 1P and Calvin Sun 1P. 

The Yearbook also includes the EJ’s special reports on the 2014 U.S. Go Congress, the 2014 World Amateur Go Championship and the 2014 Cotsen Open. The handy online resource gathers links to this wealth of material, enabling members to quickly find what they’re looking for on a month-by-month list. Once selected, game records or PDFs open up quickly and easily for review or download. Click here for details on AGA membership.

In-seong Hwang 8D’s Online Go School Welcomes New Students

Thursday December 25, 2014

In-seong Hwang 8D’s online go school starts its fourth American season – and 11th European season – next month and is accepting new 2014.12.23_In-seong Hwangstudents now. Click here for details on the American Yunguseng Dojang and here for the European Yunguseng Dojang. A well-known top player in Europe, Hwang Inseong 8D trained at the Korean Yunguseng Academy, studied Go in Myong-ji University and worked for a baduk TV channel as commentator. The program consists of interactive online lectures, student league-play and game reviews on KGS. Students have access to all past lectures and reviews — more than 100 lectures and over 2,000 game review videos — as well as “personal go reports” to help students assess the progress they are making and the areas which need most work. “After just one year, the American league already has the biggest number of players, thanks to the members who bring their friends,” says Hwang. “Since we have more members, the next season league will be much more interesting and competitive!” Click here for details on the program, schedule and pricing.

Singapore Go School Welcomes US Students

Saturday December 20, 2014

A new go school in Singapore welcomes students from the United States. The Go Academy offers a wide range of classes, from a2014.12.18_GoAcademy 1-day introduction to kyu and dan intensive camps, reports Director Daniel Chan. More info available on Facebook.