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

Hikaru Trivia Contest Stumps Hotta Yumi

Monday August 6, 2012

Hotta Yumi, author of the award winning Hikaru no Go manga, delighted kids and teens in the Youth Room at the U.S. Go Congress on Monday.  The second annual Hikaru no Go Trivia Contest was a huge success, with Hotta (seated) serving as the official judge.  Fifteen kids competed in teams of three, trying to answer questions that were so difficult even Hotta was often stumped.  Reigning Hikaru trivia champion Bijan Saniee (standing, far right, in photo below) led his team to victory, once again showing his profound knowledge of the most obscure bits of detail from the popular manga.  Ten-year-old Austin Liao (at far left in photo at right) gave him a run for his money though, popping his hand up repeatedly, and correctly answering some of the most challenging questions of the afternoon.  After Team Bijan secured their victory, Hotta Yumi signed autographs and took photos with fans. Winston Jen (at left in photo at left), who donated 1,000 sets of the manga to the AGA, competed on a team as well.  A special moment came when Hotta presented Jen with a thank-you gift , an original hand-drawn picture of Sai and Hikaru, dedicated to Jen by name, and signed by both Hotta and Hikaru artist Takeshi Obata.  Test your own Hikaru knowledge with this HNG Quiz with some of the questions from the contest: A: Who drank his coffee black, even when he was in middle school? B: Who was Isumi’s roommate in China? C: What is Akira’s mother named?  D: How is Hikaru able to take the Insei test, even though he missed the deadline? E: On what day does Sai disappear, and how can you tell? Click here and you could be a winner!
- Paul Barchilon, Youth Editor; photos by Chris Garlock

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Phil’s Portraits: Monday’s Gallery

Monday August 6, 2012

Photos by EJ photographer Phil Straus. Top left: EJ game recorder Richard Dolen; Top right: longtime Congress attendee Ken Koester (second from right) and fellow Lightning Tournament players await instructions from TD Keith Arnold; Bottom right: KGS Admin Akane Negishi shows off her go-themed earrings and nails; Bottom left: Triple-threat Tournament Director Karoline Burrall (TD for the U.S. Open, North American Ing Masters and Strong Players Open).

Maeda Organizing 2013 Go Camp in Osaka

Monday August 6, 2012

Maeda Ryo 6P, the popular Japanese professional who’s a regular attendee at the annual U.S.Go Congress, is organizing a 3-week intensive go camp in Osaka next year. “I guarantee a 3-stone improvement for kyu players,” Maeda (at left) smilingly told the E-Journal Monday, “and one stone for dan players.”  Classes will run five days a week, with two days off for sight-seeing to places like the Shusaku Memorial Museum in Innoshima as well as Kyoto, Nara and Himeji. Campers will play league games in the morning, with teaching games with pros – 4-5 will be available daily — in the afternoon, along with lectures, quizzes and simuls, and in the evening there will be casual games with local amateur players. Li Ting 1P — another popular Congress pro — is also helping organize the camp, along with Hayashi Kouzou 6P, with the support of the Kansai Ki-in. Email Osaka.go.2013@gmail.com for more info or to reserve your space.
photo: Maeda giving a lecture Monday at the U.S. Go Congress; photo by Chris Garlock 

Congress Updates (Sunday, August 5): Tournament Reports; Win a Free Private Pro Lesson; Sign Up for U.S. Pair Go Championships; 9×9 Table Winners

Sunday August 5, 2012

Tournament Reports
U.S. Open: Canadian players played a leading role in some top-board upsets at the 2012 U.S. Open, which got underway Sunday morning at the Blue Ridge Assembly in Black Mountain, NC. Newly-minted U.S. pro Gansheng Shi of Canada lost to Canadian Go Association President James Sedgwick, while defending U.S. Open champion Yongfei Ge lost to Bill Lin; both are also Canadians. For complete Round 1 results from the Open, NAIM and SPO, as well as top-board game records, are available on the tournament crosstab. Click here for crosstabs and game records for NAIM and the SPOTop-board Open games are being broadcast live daily on KGS from 9a-12p (EST); NAIM and SPO games are from 7-10p.
photo: birds-eye view of the U.S. Open main playing area; photo by Chris Garlock

Win a Free Private Pro Lesson!: Find the best fuseki – the first 8 moves — on this USA-shaped go board and win a private one-hour lesson at the Go Congress with one of the  professionals in attendance. “Beware the quirky border points,” warns Congress Co-Director Paul Celmer. “In general, if a stone can cover more than one point it’s considered one point.” Printouts of the board grid will be available at the Congress Help Desk. Mark white moves with a number and black moves with a number in a circle. The winner will be determined by a panel of Congress pros. Deadline for entries is Thursday at noon. Include your name and email and deliver your completed entry to the Congress Help Desk.

Sign Up for U.S. Pair Go Championships: The U.S. Pair Go Championships will be held Thursday evening. Sign-up sheets will be posted in the BRC lobby to enter your Male-Female partnerships. “Entry deadline is 11:00pm Wednesday night!” says TD Todd Heidenreich. Anyone signing up after the deadline will be placed on the Alternates List and paired into the tournament if possible.

9×9 Table Winners: Sathya Anand 2k; Erik Backus 4k; William Xu 5k; Kalinda Fraser 8k; Aaron Otero 13k; Edward Lane 22k; Justin Ching 3d; Louie Liu 2d; Gabriella Su 1d.
- Lee Huynh

Burrall, Barber, Khalsa & Zhang Win AGA Board Seats

Sunday August 5, 2012

Steven Burrall, Robert Barber, Gurujeet Khalsa and Zhiyuan [Edward] Zhang have won election to the AGA Board of Directors. Burrall (top left) will represent the Western region, Barber (top right) the Central, Khalsa (bottom right) the Eastern and Zhang (bottom left) is At-Large; the terms are for two years.

“This election offered excellent choices for the chapters and membership,” said AGA President Allan Abramson. “Good people will replace good people, and we all will benefit from fresh ideas. One of my priorities has been to strengthen Board-President relations, and I’m sure this will continue under incoming President Andy Okun and the new Board. Thanks to Chuck, Jie, Lisa, and Gordon for working so hard for the AGA! I am sure we will see them again in other AGA roles. ”

The results were tallied Saturday night: Western: Steven Burrall 55% (21 votes); Chris Kirschner 36% (14); Jeff Horn 7% (3). Eastern: Gurujeet Khalsa 74% (32); Feng Yun 16% (7); Thomas Hsiang (withdrew) 6% (3); Central: Robert Barber 58% (14); Lisa Scott 41% (10); At-Large: Zhiyuan [Edward] Zhang 34% (85); Chuck Robbins 29% (74); Jie Li 26% (65); Abstain 8% (20); Other (At-Large): Roy Laird 2 votes, Feng Yun 1 vote, Bob Bacon 1 vote.

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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Seattle Go Center Drops Lawsuit Against Nihon Ki-in, Moves Forward in “Spirit of friendship and cooperation”

Sunday August 5, 2012

The Seattle Go Center (SGC) has dropped its lawsuit against the Nihon Ki-in. “Representatives for both the Go Center and the Nihon Ki-in are in agreement that we can amicably resolve any issues in a manner that is beneficial to both parties, and that will allow both organizations to continue fulfilling our mutual goals of sharing, teaching and promoting go in the United States in the tradition of Iwamoto-Sensei,” the SGC Board of Directors announced on August 2. “We are deeply grateful to the Nihon Ki-in for their willingness to put this incident behind us and work together toward resolution in the spirit of friendship and cooperation which has been the hallmark of our relationship from even before the founding of the Seattle Go Center” said SGC Board President Andrew Gross. Gross also expressed the Board’s “sincere gratitude for the unfailing support and generosity that the Nihon Ki-in has always extended to us,” adding that “we look forward to continuing the friendship long into the future.” Finally, the Board thanked the members of the Seattle Go Center “for their unwavering commitment during this difficult period.”
Photo: Seattle Go Center outreach at the Bon Odori Festival on July 21; photo by Brian Allan

Categories: U.S./North America
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Redmond Cup Live at 3pm.

Saturday August 4, 2012

The Redmond Cup finalists have arrived at the US Go Congress, and the stage is set for a showdown in both divisions.  Calvin Sun 7d, age 15, will face off against Jianing Gan 6d, also 15, in the Senior; both boys just played in the first AGA/Tygem Professional certification tourney, and Gan made it all the way to the finals, where he was just one game away from becoming a professional.  In the Junior Division ten year old titans Aaron Ye 5d, and Austen Liao 2d, will square off.  Liao is a dark horse contender who made the finals by fighting his way up to second place, from a seed at the bottom of the 10 player field, knocking out two players ranked higher than him.  Both games will be broadcast live on KGS, in the AGA Tournaments room, at 3pm EDT. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

Gangsheng Shi Wins to Join Andy Liu as First AGA Profesionals

Saturday August 4, 2012

Gangsheng Shi (far left) defeated Jianing Gan Saturday morning to become the second US-certified professional in the AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Finals that concluded today in Black Mountain, NC. Shi and Andy Liu won professional certification and $1,500 each in prize money.

“You both played beautifully and really earned this honor,” American Go Association President Allan Abramson (second from left) said at a special welcoming ceremony Saturday afternoon with tournament organizer Myungwan Kim 9P (second from right) and TD Jeff Shaevel (center). Kim outlined the rights and responsibilities of a professional go player to the newly-minted professionals as they sipped organic green tea from US-made cups. “You’re eligible to play in major Korean tournaments as well as other tournaments where US pros are invited,” Kim said. He also discussed the “high expectations” of professional go players, noting that “You are not individual go players any longer, you are now representatives of the AGA and the US go community.” The two nodded solemnly, looking a bit overwhelmed.

“It sounds very exciting,” Liu said, “the KBA has been so very generous to us all.” Added Shi, “I’m very happy for the opportunity to play and I hope that our success will influence more people to play go.” TD Jeff Shaevel agreed, saying that “A lot of people, including right here at the Congress, are looking up to you now. It might seem like the same as a few days ago, but everything’s changed now.”

Here’s the final set of results from the AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Finals, including all standings and prizes. For latest standings and game records, click here and scroll down to Results.

Morning games (8/4):

Promotional League:
7A (Game 2): GANSHENG SHI (W, PRO), Jianing Gan (B, Seed)

Exhibition League:
Game 1: Curtis Tang (W), CALVIN SUN (B)
Game 2: SOOIL KIM (B), Matthew Burrall (W)
Game 3: YUAN ZHOU (B), Edward Kim (W)
Game 4: BILL LIN (B), Andrew Lu (W)
Game 5: JUSTIN TENG (W), Ned Phipps (B)

Final standings and prizes

Promotional League:
PROS: Andy Liu, Gansheng Shi ($1500, each)
SEEDS: Jianing Gan, Eric Lui ($800 each)
ALTERNATES: Jing Yang, Hugh Zhang ($400 each)

Exhibition League:
1st (Final score: 6 points, $300 each) : Curtis Tang, Calvin Sun, Bill Lin
4th (4-4.5 points, $175 each): Andrew Lu, Sooil Kim, Yuan Zhou
7th (3-3.5 points): Justin Teng, Edward Kim, Matthew Burrall, Ned Phipps
11th (2 points): Ben Lockhart

photos: top right: Shi and Liu receive pro certificates from Myungwan Kin 9P and AGA President Allan Abramson as TD Jeff Shaevel looks on (photo by Chris Garlock); middle left: Shi and Liu meet with Kim for a special welcome ceremony  (photo by Chris Garlock); bottom right: the entire AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Finals group; photo by Nik Gonzales, Second Camera, The Surrounding Game

Andy Liu Wins AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Final to Become First U.S.-Certified Professional

Friday August 3, 2012

Andy Liu defeated Gansheng Shi on Friday morning to become the first US certified go professional, prevailing 2-1 in the final match of the AGA-TYGEMGO Pro tournament. Shi then defeated Jianing Gan Friday afternoon by 1.5 points in the first round of the three-game match to determine the other US certified professional. The second round will be held at 9a Saturday morning, with the third round (if necessary) to be held Saturday afternoon. Both games will be broadcast – with live commentary by Myungwan Kim 9P– on TygemGo Korea1 Server and on KGS. “This was a really exciting Final,” an exhausted Kim told the E-Journal. “All the top finalists were young players, which bodes well for the future of the new American pro system. This Final was not the end,” Kim added. “There’s a lot to do, both domestically and internationally, now that our first two US certified pros have joined the ranks of American professionals.” 

Here are the full results of Friday’s games from the AGA-TYGEMGO Pro Finals. The name in ALL CAPS is the winner (color played, next match). For latest standings and game records, click here and scroll down to Results.

Morning games (8/3):

Promotional League:
4A (Game 3): ANDY LIU (B, PRO), Gansheng Shi (B, 7A)

Exhibition League:
Game 1: CURTIS TANG (W), Andrew Lu (B)
Game 2: CALVIN SUN (W), Sooil Kim (B)
Game 3: BILL LIN (B), Hugh Zhang (W)
Game 4: EDWARD KIM (W), Justin Teng (B)
Game 5: MATTHEW BURRALL (B), Ben Lockhart (W)
Game 6: NED PHIPPS (W), Yuan Zhou (B)

Afternoon games:
7A (Game 1): GANSHENG SHI (B), Jianing Gan (W)

Saturday’s (8/4) schedule:

Morning game:
7A (Game 2): Gansheng Shi, Jianing Gan

Exhibition League
Game 1: Curtis Tang, Calvin Sun
Game 2: Sooil Kim, Matthew Burrall
Game 3: Yuan Zhou, Edward Kim
Game 4: Bill Lin, Andrew Lu
Game 5: Justin Teng, Ned Phipps

Afternoon schedule:
7A (Game 3, if needed): Gansheng Shi, Jianing Gan

photo at right: TD Jeff Shaevel congratulates Liu; photos (left) by Nik Gonzales, Second Camera, The Surrounding Game

International Go Symposium Kicks Off Saturday: Nolan Bushnell Keynotes, Online Streaming Available

Friday August 3, 2012

The International Go Symposium kicks off a full schedule of presentations on the history and culture of the game of go at 9a (EST) Saturday morning in Washburn Hall at the US Go Congress in Black Mountain, NC. The Symposium – sponsored by the International Go Federation, the American Go Foundation and the American Go Association – will also be streamed live online.  Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari, the first computer game maker, will deliver the event’s keynote speech at 7:30p. photo: Symposium organizer Peter Shotwell (in flowered shirt) and Symposium Videographer Terry Benson (in cap) setting up Friday; photo by Chris Garlock

International Go Symposium Schedule for Saturday, August 4 (the second and final day is Sunday, August 5); A = Attending Congress; S = Skype presentation

9:00    Chen Zuyuan  History  S
The Evolution of Japanese Territory and Chinese Area Scoring Since the Tang Dynasty

9:45    Jacques Basaldua  Computer  S
Advances in M-eval: A Multivariate Evaluation Function for Opening Positions in Computer Go

10:30  Peter Schumer  Teaching  A
Design of a College Go Course

11:15 IsraelRodriguez Nava  Culture  S
Cultural Considerations in the Spread of Go in Western Countries

12:00-1:00  Lunch break

 

1:00  Bill Spight  Go Theory  S
How to EstimateTerritory: Research into the Influence of Immortal, Partially Immortal, and Dead Stones, and the Estimation of Territory on the 3×3 Board

1:45  Francois van Niekerk  Computer  S
New Work on MCTS Parallelisatio

2:10  Peter Shotwell  Culture
A reading of the short version of “Historical Hypotheses and Facts About the Game of Go inVietnam,” a paper by Konstantin Bayraktarov of Bulgaria

2:15  Peter Shotwell Culture
Some Notes on the Possible Origins in Ancient Greeceand Rome(via Bactria) of the Tibetan Custodial Capture Game Mig Mang That Uses Go Stones and Boards 

2:30  Dalsoo, Kim  History  A
A Study of Flower (Star) Points in Go and Other Games

3:15  Kyle Blocher  Go Theory  A
The Value of Moves: Sente, Gote, and Combinatorial Game Theory

4:00  Ichiro Tanioka  History
The Origin of 19×19 Go-boards inChina

4:45  Dae-won Suh  Greeting

7:30  Nolan Bushnell  Keynote Speech
Peter Armenia, Paul Celmer & Peter Freedman
Moving Go From the Cultural Backgrouond to Center Stage