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

National Go Center Planned for DC

Friday July 8, 2016

The Iwamoto North American Foundation for Go at its meeting in Tokyo on Thursday announced plans to establish a National Go Center in 2016.07.08_inaf-mtg-tokyoWashington, DC. Go recently garnered global headlines when Google DeepMind’s AlphaGo AI program defeated top professional Lee Sedol and the National Go Center is intended to build on the increased public awareness and interest in the ancient game.

In addition to its role in advancing artificial intelligence, many studies have shown that go can improve student performance through development of logical and spatial thinking and even to help students with ADHD. A primary mission of the new Center is to work with educators in the region to promote go in schools from primary grades through college.

The Center will also have the mission of developing strong amateur go players in the region who can represent the US in conjunction with the American Go Association at the regional, national, and international levels. Building on an already strong tournament calendar, regional and interscholastic qualifying tournaments are planned.

Organizers of the National Go Center include many AGA volunteers and leaders from the metro Washington region, where there is a long history of promoting go education, developing cultural activities associated with the game, and training strong go players in many of the regional clubs. “It is expected that the new Center will add to the synergy to make the DC area a true national center for go,” said AGA president Andy Okun.
- photo (l-r): Shusuke MASAKI, just retired CEO of Nihon Kiin; Hiroshi YAMASHIRO 9P, Nihon Kiin Vice Chairman; Thomas HSIANG, INAF Executive Director; Hiroaki DAN, Nihon Ki-in Chairman of the Board of Directors and new president of INAF; Yuki SHIGENO, Nihon Kiin Director. Photo by Chris Garlock

 

 

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Guo Juan 5P to Attend 2016 U.S. Go Congress

Thursday July 7, 2016

A long time favorite of the U.S. go community, Guo Juan 5p is returning for the upcoming U.S. Go Congress, coming July 2016.07.07_Guo_Juan30-August 7 in Boston. Guo will be teaching a “Typical mistakes” series with four sessions, targeting 30k-20k, 20k-10k, 10k-1d, and 5k-3d. Guo Juan’s “Internet Go School” is also a sponsor of this year’s Congress, donating over €3,000 in prizes.  The Internet Go School is an online resource that has over 1000 recorded lectures on all areas of go at all levels and a Spaced Repetition System that drills students on problems until they know and remember them. Nearly 500 have already registered for the 2016 Go Congress.
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Paul Lockhart Named Teacher of the Year

Monday July 4, 2016

photo 3The American Go Foundation has selected Paul Lockhart as the 2016 Teacher of the Year.  Lockhart wins an all expenses paid trip to the US Go Congress in Boston, where he will hold an informal round table discussion about his experiences teaching children. “What a terrific honor,” said Lockhart,  “I am delighted to accept, and I look forward to the opportunity to meet and speak with other go teachers around the country.” Lockhart is well known in academic circles for his 2009 book A Mathematician’s Lament: How School Cheats Us Out of Our Most Fascinating and Imaginative Art Form.  “For the past 15 years I have been happily teaching Go at Saint Ann’s School in Brooklyn, NY,” adds Lockhart. “What began with four High School students and a magnetic travel go set has grown into a vibrant school-wide go culture, including an after school go club, annual tournaments, classes, seminars, and faculty participation.  I am especially pleased with the excitement and energy among the younger students.  Most of our club players are under 10, and many of our strongest High School players began playing go as kindergarteners.  It has been a fantastic learning experience for me as well.”

Lockhart is also well known in the go community, as the father of Will Lockhart (Director of The Surrounding Game film) and Ben Lockhart 7d, who has studied professionally in Korea and is seeking to become an AGA Professional.  “The current partnership with the ING foundation, which along with the American Collegiate Go Association (founded by Will Lockhart),  holds large go expos each year with hundreds of attendees, as well as The Surrounding Game documentary film, would not be possible had Paul not introduced go into our lives in such a meaningful way; a way that gave us such love and interest in the game that we both had no choice but to dedicate our lives to go,” writes Ben Lockhart. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo: Paul Lockhart (standing) teaching at St. Ann’s School. 

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Mexican Go Congress Breaks Records

Wednesday June 29, 2016

IMG_2831“The 3rd Mexican Go Congress turned out to be a huge success,” reports Mingming Stephanie Yin 1P. “The event was held June 18th-20th at the Tlatelolco Cultural Center in Mexico City, and was full of surprises for everyone. Three Professionals were invited: Hye-Yeon Cho 9p,  William Gansheng Shi 1p, and myself.  We held  game reviews, lectures, and simul games.   A new record high for the Mexican Open Tournament was set as well, with 56 players.   The participation in the Youth tournament was also pretty impressive, with a 36 player field in two categories,” said Yin. Mexican Go Association Youth Coordinator Sid Avila adds  “these kids are starting to compete at higher levels, some have already played in international tournaments and are also playing in the Open.”

“This is the 3rd time Mexico has run its Go Congress and every year the community is growing and people are more interested,” reports Mexican Go Association president Emil Garcia. “I believe the world of go is entering into a new stage of development, and we are really glad Mexico is catching this upheaval with the support of Associations such as KABA, the AGA, and the AGF,  who helped us bring the pros in. Undoubtedly Mexican go will keep growing having such big allies. I see a bright future for North American go as a whole.”IMG_2828

“On the last day, the pros were invited to visit a private Mexican elementary school named CIEA Pipiolo, which is the only elementary school with go as a school subject in Mexico City,” said Yin, “There are around 80 students ranging in age from 5-12 years old. Everyone is talented and extremely passionate about go. We three pros were separated and played pair go with the kids in teams.”

All three pros issued a joint message for the kids: “It’s wonderful to be here with all of you, our futures of go. We hope that you will enjoy playing go, learning go, and some of you may become professionals in the future.” Yin adds “I believe that the world of go will expand much more quickly than we expected. As professional go players, we will do our best to promote, teach, and help. We also hope that more schools will include go as a subject in America. I am seeing a brighter future for the world of go.”

For full standings from the congress click here.  For youth standings, click here.  Story by Stephanie Yin, pictures by Yin, Emil Garcia and Tonatiuh Zama

 

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Evanston Go Club Hosts Second 2016 Tourney; On Track for Quarterly Events

Wednesday June 29, 2016

The Evanston Go Club held its second tournament of the year last weekend. The event, dubbed Spring Fling, drew 34 players ranging in rank from 18k to 5d. Winners were Henry Li 2d (4-0), Cheuk To Tsui 2d (3-1), Nathan Chan 3k (4-0), Cong Chen 3k (4-0), William Torres 5k (4-0), Sean Garcia 10k (4-0), Keom Granger 10k (5-2), Crystal Lin 14k (3-2), and Chad Cook 15k2016.06.29_evanston-tourney(3-2).

“We’re back on track to run four tournaments a year again!” said Mark Rubenstein, club president and TD. “Our March Madness tournament had over 40 players, and with 34 this time it’s clear the local go community can support four a year as we had in the past.” In addition to players from Illinois, there were also players from Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan and Minnesota.
“Thanks to Immanuel Lutheran Church for letting us use the space, to Yellow Mountain for donating prizes, to everyone who helped during registration, and a special thanks to everyone who came from out of state! We’re looking forward to the next one in September.”
Click here for more info about the Evanston Go Club, other local clubs, upcoming events, and how to join the email list.
photo by Mark Rubenstein
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US Go Congress Updates; Pay Now or Wait Later

Wednesday June 29, 2016

This year’s US Go Congress in Boston “is shaping up to be the largest Go Congress ever!” reports Walther Chen. “Please help2016.06.05.congress-logo us make it a success by renewing your AGA membership and paying your outstanding balance in advance. This will help you avoid long queues during registration day at the Go Congress.” Also, he reminds Congress attendees that you have until June 30 to get a no-questions-asked full refund and if you register and pay on-site at Congress, there is a $100 late fee. “See you soon!”

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Ballot Redo for At-Large Election

Wednesday June 29, 2016

Ballots for the American Go Association’s At-Large election via Ballotbin are invalid, reports Arnold Eudell. Additional emails will arrive soon from Electionrunner. “Sorry for the inconvenience,” says Eudell. 
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Alexandra Mielke Victorious in Central Iowa

Monday June 27, 2016

Central Iowa Go Society’s second casual tournament saw 11 players, more than doubling last tournament’s five entrants, reports Jacob Upland. Players were split into a 13×13 beginner’s section and a 19×19 section. Alex Tong, 2 dan, swept all four games to win first, followed by Dan Klawitter’s impressive 2nd place finish with 3 wins. The beginner’s section came to a dead tie three ways, decided by a round robin.” Alexandra Mielke emerged the final victor to clinch first place,” Upland says.

“Next on the list is Indianola, Iowa on July 9th, continuing the rotation. Be sure to check it out!”

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Your Move/Readers Write: E-Journal Forum (Part 2); Where’s the 2015 Yearbook?

Monday June 27, 2016

E-Journal Forum (Part 2): In another response to Eric Osman’s query about a forum for responses to articles in the E-Journal, Steve Colburn also notes that the AGA has a sub forum on Lifein19x19.com. “This is for AGA stuff much like there is for other organizations. There are a few AGA officials who also read/comment on Reddit.”

Where’s the 2015 Yearbook? “I tried looking through the AGA website to find the archived zip file with all of the yearbook 2015 sgf files,” writes AGA member Shane, “but I’m having a difficult time locating it on your website. The news article doesn’t seem to link me to where to find the file and a website search for ‘year book’ didn’t yield much better results. Help?” In a related email, Dan writes “I am a member who cannot figure out how to download the 2015 Go Yearbook. Please advise.”
The Yearbook is only for AGA members, so it’s not posted on the website; look for your June 22 Member’s Edition of the E-Journal, which contains individual links to the game commentaries published in 2015, as well as in a handy zip file. 

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Matthew Machado Tops Austin Tourney

Monday June 27, 2016

The Austin Go Club held a 7-round handicap tournament June 25-26th.  A total of 18 players participated ranging in strength 2016.06.27_austin-tourneyfrom 6 dan to 10 kyu. Prizes were awarded to the following participants:

Dan Level: 1st Place – Matthew Machado (2d) 6 – 1; 2nd Place – Zhao Zhixun (6d) 4-1; 3rd Place – Chengkai Ruan (4d) 4-4; Chris Hudnall (2d) 4-3

Kyu Level: 1st Place – Bart Jacob (3k) 6-1; 2nd Place – Lei Xu (2k) 5-2; John Jacob (4k) 5-2; 3rd Place –Ken Blake (1k) 4-3; Ray Heitmann (5k) 4-4

Tournament directors Bart Jacob and Jim Conyngham would like to thank all players for participating and Great Hall Games for supplying the playing venue and gift certificates as prizes.

Photo: winners (l-r): Ray Heitmann, Ken Blake, Chis Hudnall, Chengkai (Kyle) Ruan, John Jacob, Cho Chixun, Lei Xu, Matthew Machado

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