Wednesday June 26, 2013
Sighted go players who struggle to master the game of go may be surprised to learn that many blind people in Japan know how to play go, and that there are clubs with blind players who meet on a regular basis. Last Fall, Bay Area Go Players Association board members Roger and Lisa Schrag traveled to Japan and met with Mr. Fumio Miyano (second from right in photo) of the Japan Go Society for the Visually Impaired in Osaka, Japan. The Society produces special 9×9 and 19×19 go sets and Braille go books so that blind and visually impaired people can play go. Black and white stones can be differentiated by feel, grid lines are raised, and the stones fit into holes in the board so that they will not move when a player touches them to read the board position.
The Japan Go Society for the Visually Impaired also hosts an annual international go tournament for blind players. There are some strong go players out there who are blind. Nakamaru Hitoshi of Japan and Song Jung-taek of Korea, for example, each are rated at 5 dan.
The Society has provided Bay Area Go Players Association with a special 9×9 go set and Braille go materials. “If you have a blind or visually impaired friend in the San Francisco Bay Area interested in learning to play go, we now have the necessary equipment to teach them,” says Roger Schrag; contact him for details and to make arrangements.
Wednesday June 26, 2013
Now in our 14th year of providing comprehensive coverage of the world go scene, the American Go E-Journal is looking for a few dedicated volunteers to help update our archives. Our current searchable online archives go back to April 2010 and while E-Journals prior to that are available online they’re not searchable. Experience with WordPress helpful but not necessary; email firstname.lastname@example.org if interested. Volunteers will be eligible to receive recognition and a stylish EJ cap.
Monday June 24, 2013
Bartel & Zimmerman Dominate Lancaster, PA Instant-Pairing Tournament: Marie Bartel 14k notched five wins against six opponents and Sam Zimmerman 5k racked up six wins against five opponents in the June 22 Lancaster (PA) Summer Ratings Tournament’s instant pairing format, which allowed players to start their next game almost immediately after finishing a game. Though the field was just seven players, first-time tournament director Jason Long said “Of course we would like to see a larger attendance, but those who came had fun and made the event a success!”
NOVA School’s Out Tournament: Two dozen players ranging from 6-dan to 21-kyu participated in the NOVA School’s Out Tournament on June 22. “In a striking demonstration of rating parity, only five players scored three or four wins,” reports TD Allan Abramson. James Pinkerton 4d, 4-0; Edward James Lane 9k, 4-0; Jonathan Barlow 15k, 4-0; and Gary Smith 9k, 3-1. David Reed 5k, scored 2-0 playing only two games, earning an honorable mention.
Monday June 24, 2013
The Evanston (IL) Go Club’s “Here Comes The Sun” tournament last weekend drew 19 players. Winners were Albert Yen 7d, Laura Moon 2k, Tim Torres 8k and Crystal Lin 16k. “No one guessed the meaning of the name of the tournament, although there were many good attempts,” reports TD Mark Rubenstein. “The name is based on the fact that on June 22 – the same date as the tournament — in 1633 The Holy Office in Rome forced Galileo Galilei to recant his view that the Sun, not the Earth, is the center of the Universe.”
photo: Jim McAdams plays Joyce Lin; photo by Mark Rubenstein
Sunday June 23, 2013
David Chau 11k led a field of eight players at the June 22 Davis/Sacramento Summer Quarterly tournament with a perfect four wins. The event drew players from the San Francisco Bay Area to the Sierra foothills, including William (Bill) Dreher 20k, who was participating in his first AGA tournament.
- Willard Haynes
Saturday June 22, 2013
New York plays Boston Sunday afternoon in Round 7 of the AGA Pandanet City League’s A League. All games on June 23 will be played in the AGA City League room on Pandanet (IGS), starting at 9a EST. The line-up: 9a (EST): Board 3: Qian, Yingzhi New York [delight] vs Xie, Guochen Boston [guochen]; 2p (EST): Board 1: Liu, Zhi Yuan (Andy) 1p New York [cloudnotes] vs Yang, Huiren 1p Boston [hyang12]; 2p: Board 2: Liang, Jie Boston [gust] vs Chen, ZhaoNian (Michael) New York.
Saturday June 22, 2013
Voting begins soon for the three open seats on the American Go Association’s Board of Directors. Candidates are Martin Lebl in the central region, and incumbents Paul Celmer and Chris Kirschner for the eastern and western regions respectively. Voting is by AGA chapters, and chapter reps “should have received their initial ballot count through the AGA Chapters mailing list,” reports Election Coordinator Arnold Eudell. Official ballots will be going out in one week and must be received by August 3; notify email@example.com of any discrepancies. Click here for voting procedures and candidate statements.
Friday June 21, 2013
For the second consecutive year, top young North American players have defeated their European counterparts in the Transatlantic Youth Go Friendship Match. “The Europeans lost by a large margin last year,” reports organizer Andrew Huang, “and were certainly looking for a more positive result this year. However, the North American team was keen to stifle the Europeans’ ambitions, and won the first seven games, eventually finishing with an 8-2 victory. We are looking forward to another exciting event next year, as the European team will be thirsty to exact revenge.” The match was held June 2 on KGS, and marked the fifth year for the Transatlantic Youth Tourney. Ten players representing the United States and Canada teamed up for North America, while ten European youngsters were chosen from Russia, Germany, France, Austria, Romania, Czechia, Slovakia, and Poland to compete for the Europeans. Lawrence Ku and the American Go Honor Society organized the event, which was held in the Transatlantic Youth Go Tournament room on KGS. Previous years events are listed here; for this year’s results, click here. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Image by Paul Barchilon, based on a graphic from DairyReporter.com
Thursday June 20, 2013
“Who would have guessed that go would catch on so well in a tiny rural town where hogs outnumber humans?” asks a school librarian in rural North Carolina.
The American Go Foundation has sent hundreds of copies of Hikaru no Go manga to schools and libraries across the country. One set went to a middle school in Burgaw, North Carolina. “Ninety percent of our students receive free or reduced price lunch,” writes school librarian Kathleen Stewart-Taylor. “Most of our 275 students are African American or Latinos. Some of them are children of migrant workers; a few of them work in the fields/farms themselves. Many have parents who can’t speak English or can’t read or write in any language. We live within 20 minutes of the ocean, but most of my students have never seen it.” But, says Stewart-Taylor, “I would bet that 75 % of my students now know about go and at least 25% have tried to play a game.”
“Several months ago you sent us a free set of (Hikaru no Go) manga,” says Stewart-Taylor. “It worked. We now have a go club and they are talking about going to a tournament next year! This is a big deal for us. We have tried chess, but our students didn’t like the deep game trees, they prefer the sense of ‘aliveness’ that they have with go.” The Hikaru no Go series was among the top 10 books circulated during the second semester and “Top 5 for the last 9 weeks,” Stewart-Taylor reports. “Many students now come in to the library during lunch to log on to Tigers Mouth. One of the Hikaru manga even got swiped! This just doesn’t happen. Check out books and lose them, sure. Drop one off the combine and run over it, you bet ya. But stolen?” (He returned it.)
“Next year, If I can get a nucleus of students who know the game well enough to teach others, I’m going to print off small go boards and have them play during lunch,” Stewart-Taylor adds. “Go is cheap — just give them a printout of a board and a couple of different colored markers. Lunch can be a hard time with lots of discipline referrals. I’m hoping that playing go will reduce the problem behaviors.”
“A student ran up me this afternoon and gasped ‘Mrs. Stewart! Did you know about the agfgo website?! (pant pant) . . . It’s so cool!’ He’ll be at the local public library this weekend, studying go.”
- report by Roy Laird
6/20: Burgaw is in North Carolina, not South Carolina, as originally reported.