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

New Go Comics on Tiger’s Mouth

Monday September 24, 2012

The American Go Federation’s (AGF) youth website, tigersmouth.org, is publishing new comic strips weekly again.  The most recent addition is Aji’s Quest, by Collette Bezio, which features the adventures of a quoll named Aji and a tanuki named Tenuki.  What’s a quoll?  Good question. To find out, check out the new strip here.  Bezio runs an AGF program at her library, in Seymour WI, and is a writer as well as an artist.  You can see more of her work on her website.  The Better Move is another new comic available on Tiger’s Mouth.  Deftly illustrated by Maryland cartoonist Yi Weng, in a Chinese brush painting style, the strip features mini comics on different go themes.  Liberty races, capturing the cranes in their nest, and how to play first capture go have all had their own stips, and the monkey jump is coming out soon.  Tiger’s Mouth will keep adding new strips weekly for the next few months, so check in on Saturdays for the latest updates. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Graphic: A quol named Aji, by Colette Bezio.

 

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Pandanet-AGA City League Registration Opens

Sunday September 23, 2012

Registration is now open for the inaugural season the Pandanet-AGA City League. Fully sponsored and funded by Pandanet, this new online tournament will provide players an opportunity for regional competition. “This is an exciting new opportunity to develop our go community here in the US,” says AGA President Andy Okun. “Thanks to Pandanet for a great competition that will build up the US go community in new ways.” Teams will consist of four players, three of which will play in each round on a rotating basis, and a non-playing team captain. Each team will represent a city or a region. The tournament format will be double round robin, with 10 rounds each season. The top six teams will make up an “A” League and will play a double round-robin with each other throughout the year on the International Go Server (IGS). A final round between the top two teams in the A League will be played at the US Go Congress. Other teams will be placed into a “B” League and possibly a third, “C” League. The top finisher in the B League moves up to the A League after each season, replacing the bottom A League team. Registration for Season 1 closes December 20, 2012 and the first season will begin January 1st on an accelerated schedule, with all following seasons beginning September 1st of each year. In addition to generous cash prizes provided by Pandanet, teams are encouraged to seek their own local sponsors to provide the team with travel, training, game-fees, celebration and community events. “Teams of all strengths are welcomed and encouraged to register!” says tournament director Jon Boley. Click here for tournament information, procedures, and rules.  Click here to register online.

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.

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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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

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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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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