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

2013 US–Cuba Friendship Trip Planned

Sunday September 23, 2012

Playing go with Cuban players is part of a trip to Havana, Cuba being planned for February 15-21, 2013. “The highlight will be 2.5 days of go with Cuban players at the Academia Cubana de Go,” says Bob Gilman, who’s organizing the trip in association with the Academia Cubana de Go and Philip Peters of Antilles Resources and which will take place as a ‘people-to-people’ trip under a license issued by the US Department of the Treasury. The itinerary also includes three days of excursions involving substantial contact with the Cuban people, which may include a tour of Old Havana, the city’s colonial core, to see how its architecture is being restored and preserved, and to meet the people involved, and a visit to Ernest Hemingway’s home just outside Havana. While all trip participants are expected to participate in the itinerary, there will also be free time in the evenings in which to enjoy Havana or play informal games with Cuban players. Email goincuba@gmail.com for more information. There is also a trip blog  which will provide information and field comments as travel plans develop.

 

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AGF College Scholarship

Monday September 17, 2012

Applications are now being accepted for the American Go Foundation college scholarship.  One of last year’s winners, Rachel Daley (at left), writes: “I found that I was better at teaching the game than actually playing. Without even realizing it, I became more confident with strangers. . . . Go also taught me how to be comfortable in a room where I was the only female. I saw [the male players] as my peers and rivals instead of some different entity. This gave me the confidence to never feel intimidated by the male majority in my science and math classes. . . . I realized that this is how society changes – not by a sudden huge wave but by individuals not accepting degrading stereotypes and moving forward despite them.” The AGF Scholarship recognizes high school students who have served as important youth organizers and promoters for the go community . To apply, download and complete the application form here. Applicants should describe their accomplishments and volunteer work in a short essay. Letters of recommendation may also be included. Students whose enthusiasm and ambition have helped spread go in under-served areas will be given special consideration. Strong players who spend much of their time voluntarily teaching will also be considered, although the award focuses on promoters and organizers who have made substantial contributions during their go career. A report on last year’s winners can be found here. - Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.

New Turn-Based Go Server Comes to U.S.

Monday September 17, 2012

The world of turn-based servers – the modern equivalent of postal go – has expanded with the addition of the International Network Go Organization (INGO). INGO, based in Japan, launched back in May 2011 and has since expanded to China, Taiwan, Korea, Australia, Germany and England.  “We think we should invite the United States now,” says INGO Chairman Isao Yamashita. The advantage of turn-based go (TBG) is that “A player can think long or short as he likes,” notes Yamashita. “Thus a game may take a month or longer depending on the total number of moves of a game or how frequently each player sends his move.”  Many turn-based players play multiple games simultaneously. Links to INGO and other TBG servers – as well as real-time servers – can be found on the AGA’s Internet Go page.

SmartGo Books Releases 3 Kiseido Classics

Monday September 17, 2012

SmartGo Books now includes three classics from the much-requested Elementary Go Series (Kiseido). “Life and Death” and “Tesuji,” both by James Davies, and “Attack and Defense” by Akira Ishida & James Davies. “These are books you read and re-read as you get stronger,” says SmartGo’s Anders Kierulf. Other recent additions include the first two volumes of Yilun Yang’s “The Workshop Lectures” (Slate & Shell), with chapters on when to tenuki, choosing the direction of attack, how to invade, pincers, extensions, and more. Click here for details. SmartGo Books is a free app for iOS (iPad & iPhone), with 42 go books now available for in-app purchase.

Shotwell Discusses Use of Weiqi Strategies In Politics

Sunday September 16, 2012

In the new Appendix VII of his “Speculations” article in the Bob High e-Library, longtime go writer Peter Shotwell takes a closer look at financier Mark Spitznagel’s recent guest Forbes column “The Grand Shi Strategy of Ron Paul” (Ron Paul Using Go Strategy to Advance Agenda at GOP Convention? 8/26 EJ).  Spitznagel likened the political strategies of losing presidential candidate Ron Paul to the weiqi strategy of shi, the building of initial influence for future profits instead of going for immediate gain. “The quintessential metaphor for shi is water,” wrote Spitznagel, “flowing ever downward in the most naturally powerful and effective way, ultimately overcoming everything in its path. Paradoxically, it is one of the softest and yet strongest forces in nature.” The fascinating workings, aims and political uses of this strategy throughout Asian history are quite extensive and complex, and Shotwell’s 8-page article fills in the gaps for those who are interested.
- photo courtesy How-To Geek

 

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2013 U.S. Go Congress Set for Tacoma, WA

Sunday September 16, 2012

The 2013 U.S. Go Congress will be held August 3-10 at Pacific Lutheran University in Parkland, a suburb of Tacoma, Washington, just south of Seattle. Stay tuned for further details as they’re available.

30 Countries to Compete in Pandanet Go European Team Championship

Thursday September 13, 2012

Thirty European countries are fielding teams in the third Pandanet Go European Team Championship (PGETC). The PGETC is a traditional European Go Federation-style tournament in which national teams play in a league system on the Pandanet-IGS server in the EuropeanTeamChamp room. Teams are made up of up to 12 players, with four selected to play in each round. The teams are divided into three leagues and there will be nine rounds, beginning September 18. The top four teams will play in finals at the 57th European Go Congress in Olsztynin July 2013. Pandanet is currently organizing a similar AGA City League (AGA Announces New Pandanet-AGA City League 8/3 EJ) and is looking for players in cities to participate: email tournaments@usgo.org if you’re interested.

AGA Board Welcomes New Members, Looks to Future

Thursday September 13, 2012

Newly-elected members Steve Burrall, Edward Zhang, Bob Barber, and Gurujeet Khalsa were welcomed aboard at the September 9th meeting of the American Go Association’s Board of Directors via conference call. The board thanked outgoing members Chuck Robbins, Lisa Scott, Jie Li, and Andy Okun, and appointed Daniel Smith as Chairperson and Chuck Robbins as Secretary (a position appointed by the board).

The board discussed President Andy Okun’s report including the promising early organization of the 2016 World Mind Sports Games in Brazil, the Congress liaison/coordinator role, the proposed 2014 Congress in Vancouver and the related issue of travel by non-citizen U.S. residents to Canada and the appointment of Lisa Scott to the position of volunteer coordinator. The treasurer’s first quarter report was presented, covering closure of accounts from previous congresses and new financial oversight measures the AGA will assume in future Congresses.

Addressing some items brought up at the recent Go Congress, the board had a preliminary discussion about developing a policy regarding game records and their broadcasting, which will take account of intellectual property rules affecting collections of game records, instructed Okun to look into what’s necessary to fix the AGA Go Database (which has been disabled because of security concerns), and formed a committee to propose an email privacy policy regarding access to AGA member email addresses. The board discussed options for funding international travel for strong players, but did not arrive at a conclusion.

Finally, the board began reviewing progress on the goals it set for the AGA last year, which were: rank certification; development of the AGA professional system; improving the AGA member experience in an assortment of ways; fundraising and sponsorship; using new methods to market go and increase membership.  Due to the length of the meeting, that discussion will be continued at the next board meeting, but it was clear that instituting a rank certification system will be a high priority in the coming year.
- reported by Daniel Smith

Categories: U.S./North America
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DC Metro School Tourney Set for Sept 29

Thursday September 13, 2012

“The first DC Metropolitan Area School Go Tournament will be held at George Mason University in Arlington, VA on Saturday, September 29,” reports  American Go Honor Society Vice President Julian Erville. “Registration for the tournament is still open, and anyone is welcome to watch, or play self-paired games. AGA membership is not required, and all DC Metro schools are invited to attend,” adds Erville. For information — including about prizes — contact Justin Teng at lightvolt@gmail.com.
- Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

AGA Pro Tourney Game Records Posted; Women Who Get Go; Vogue interviews Xie Yimin; GoGoD Publishes Chinese Classic in E-Book Form; Go Mention in Stevie McCabe Mystery; Nice Go

Wednesday September 12, 2012

AGA Pro Tourney Game Records Posted: AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Tournament game records for both the main tournament and the Exhibition League have been added to the AGA Professional System page on the AGA website. To see the tournament draw – and download game records – scroll down to “Results.” Thanks to Dennis Wheeler and Steve Colburn for their work on this.

Women Who Get Go: Go has been catching on recently among young women in Japan, Daniel Krieger reported in The Japan Times earlier this year (The women who get go 5/15/2012). “Just last year, it started to get more popular,” said Mayumi Otsuka, 29, who has been hosting monthly get-togethers since last year at a go parlor in Osaka where she and her 27-year-old sister, Satomi, have been working (and playing up to 10 times a day) for the past three years. International Go Federation vice president Thomas Hsiang said that “To facilitate the next big change, we need a model” like a “Bobby Fischer” of women’s go, and suggested that the two best bets on the pro scene are 18-year-old Joanne Missingham, who is a sensation in Taiwan, and Hsieh Yi Min (Xie Yimin), a 22-year-old prodigy who came to Japan 10 years ago and is now at the top of the women’s game. photo: Yasuko Mantani (left) and Aya Kitano commence a game of go at the Shinsaibashi Igo Salon in Osaka. photo by AIMI NAKANO, courtesy The Japan Times

Vogue interviews Xie Yimin: In a related story, GoGameGuru’s David Ormerod reports that “Vogue Taiwan and the fashion house Chanel recently did a video interview with Xie Yimin, the Women’s Honinbo Meijin in Japan. It’s part of a series of interviews with directors, musicians, go players – basically artists.” Although the video is in Mandarin, GoGameGuru has posted an English transcript along with the video here. “When I first arrived at the Nihon Kiin, I had to learn to kneel while I played,” Xie Yimin says in the interview. “I would kneel until my legs and feet went numb. However, my Go Sensei (teacher) said that, before the goban, one must learn to display a modest demeanour before one can become strong at Go.”

GoGoD Publishes Chinese Classic in E-Book Form: GoGoD has issued another e-book on Amazon: Gateway To All Marvels. Gateway is special edition of the 1347 Chinese classic Xuanxuan Qijing (Gengen Gokyo in Japanese), which John Fairbairn says “is surely the most significant go book ever produced. It has become the foundation for virtually every problem book since, as well as being the main source for early go theory.” The new e-book version “brings together every problem and every variant from perhaps every subsequent edition, and discusses how the almost 500 problems and their solutions have evolved and varied, and also how even modern professionals often disagree on the correct solutions or, dare we say it, trip up,” Fairbairn adds. Previous GoGoD e-books include Inoue Genan Inseki and The Life of Honinbo Shuei, also available on Amazon.

Go Mention in Stevie McCabe Mystery: “Go is mentioned in the fifth novel in the Stevie McCabe mystery series, No Shadow in the City by John Callaghan, a Scottish author,” reports Su Co Chon Duc (Marjorie E. Hey). “In Chapter 4, there are several pages introducing go to the private investigator, Stevie McCabe. It is mentioned again in passing in Chapters 6 and 29. There’s some mayhem, but there are no ripping viscera, no splintering skulls. Yes, there are sexual encounters, because the characters have real lives, but no lingering erotica. It is marked for For Adults because of language.” While the first four books are available in paperback and Kindle format, Su Co Chon Duc notes that this book is currently only available on Kindle.

Nice Go: Bob Barber reports that go pops up in “Mr. Nice,” a 2010 film about a Welsh drug dealer. “There’s a minute of go at minute 19,” says Barber.