American Go E-Journal » World

Google’s Artificial Intelligence Whiz Hints He’s Cracked Go

Tuesday November 24, 2015

Demis Hassabis, the artificial intelligence savant behind Google DeepMind, hinted recently that his secretive team has cracked go, reports 2015.11.25_DeepMind Founder<re/code> magazine. While DeepMind has has put out a couple papers of its training algorithms beating Atari games it has released little else. Asked in an interview with the Royal Society of London “Maybe you will have a surprise about go?” Hassabis smiled and said “I can’t talk about it yet, but in a few months I think there will be quite a big surprise,” he replied.

Categories: World

Pandanet Internet World Amateur Go Tournament Registration Open

Wednesday November 18, 2015

The 20th Pandanet Internet World Amateur Go Tournament (IWAG) is currently accepting registrations.  The deadline is December 9.  All games must be played on the Pandanet server. As in previous years, the registrants are divided into 2015.11.18_pandanet-iwagthree regions, and in each region further divided into several ranking bands.  Winners in each band will receive prizes.  In the preliminary round, players play with others in the same band and in the same region.  Regional winners then move on to play in the international final rounds. Click here for further details.


2nd Jin Long Chen Cup Seeks Teams from around the World

Wednesday November 11, 2015

The American Go Association (AGA) and Candian Go Association (CGA) are seeking players interested in forming teams and traveling to Guangzhou, China, to compete in the second Jin Long Cheng World Team Go Championship from Dec. 15 to 23. The three players for the US team must be US citizens and be able to pay for their own travel and lodging (550 RMB per day) in Guangzhou; they may also bring a team official. Likewise, the Canadian team must comprise three Canadian citizens able to pay their own way. The tournament will include seeded teams from China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan, as well as three wild card teams from China, Japan and Korea. According to the China Qiyuan, teams from other countries are welcome as well. If more than nine teams register from the rest of the world including the US and Canada, then there will be a preliminary qualifying round to reduce the number to nine. (Teams eliminated at that phase will have a chance to participate in tourism, friendly matches with local players and other go activities.) The final group of up to 16 teams will compete in a five-round Swiss tournament, with the top four teams winning prizes up to 2 million RMB. Teams with no more than one pro player will be in competition for amateur team prizes of 100,000 RMB for winning three rounds, 50,000 RMB for winning two rounds and 30,000 RMB for winning one round. Players or already arranged teams should contact AGA President Andy Okun at or CGA president James Sedgwick at by November 20. Given the short time line, preference will be given to already formed teams and to players who get in contact fastest.


Ke Jie and Shi Yue Proceed to 2015 Samsung Cup Final

Sunday November 8, 2015

Ke Jie 9p will face Shi Yue 9p in the 2015 Samsung Cup finals. As previously reported (Ke Jie Wins Samsung Cup Semifinal 11/3 EJ), Ke — the2015.11.08_Ke-Jie-Shi-Yue-2015-Samsung-Cupnew #1 in China and ranked #2 in the world in Dr Bai Taeil’s rating system — defeated Lee Sedol 9p 2-0 in the semi-finals last week. Shi Yue 9p — #2 in China — lost the first game in his semi against Tang Weixing 9p but came back to win the next two games. Click here for GoGameGuru’s complete report, including comments by Younggil An 8P, game records and photos.
- photo: Ke Jie 9p (left) and Shi Yue 9p

Categories: China,World

Samsung Cup Semifinals to be Broadcast Monday with Live English Commentary on AGA Channels

Saturday October 31, 2015

The upcoming Samsung Cup semifinal match between Ke Jie and Lee Sedol has the go world buzzing. Ke Jie (right), regarded as the strongest player in2015.11.01_Ke Jie-Lee Sedol-samsung-semi China today and currently rated #2 in the world, will face Lee Sedol (left), #3 worldwide, Monday in their best-of-three match. The two players have never before met in tournament play, and the Samsung Cup is one of the most prestigious international titles, with a grand prize of over $250,000 USD.

Myungwan Kim 9p will provide live commentary for English-speaking players via the AGA’s official YouTube channel and official Twitch channel. Kim says hundreds of thousands will watch the event in Korea alone, and a large audience is expected in China as well. “These could be the best games of the year,” he says.

The games are scheduled for Monday, Nov. 2, Tuesday, Nov. 3, and Wednesday, Nov. 4 (if necessary). Video commentary will begin at 7:30PM PST (10:30p EST) each day.
- Andrew Jackson


World Students Go Oza Seeks Entrants

Sunday October 4, 2015

University/college students under the age of 30 are invited to participate in an online preliminary competition for the 14th World Students Go 2015.10.04_student-oza-13thOza Championship. Click here for details and here for the entry form. Application deadline is October 19. Note that students living in China, Korea, Japan and Chinese Taipei cannot participate in the online preliminary round.

The World Students Go Oza Championship will be held February 22-26, 2016 in Tokyo, Japan, where 16 students from around the world will compete to determine the world’s number one student player.

Categories: Japan,World,Youth

Student Pair Go Qualifier This Weekend

Thursday September 24, 2015

318The 2nd World Students Pair Go Championship is coming up in December, and the United States is searching for a male and female representative through a pair go qualifying tournament.

The online pair go qualifying tournament will be held this weekend with a possible extension to Monday if needed. The winners of the qualifiers will get 50 percent of the round-trip airfare cost, and the meals will be covered from Friday evening to Tuesday morning. The championship will be held in Tokyo, Japan from December 4th to the 8th, and this will be a 4-round Swiss system with a 45 minute sudden death time limit.

To be eligible for the tournament and the championship, you must have been an AGA member for at least one year, an amateur player,  an undergraduate or graduate student of a University/College, under the age of 30, a US citizen, and you must have lived in the US for at least six years in the last twelve years

Interested players should email with their names and best method of contact as soon as possible as we need to select a representative by October 1st. Please email even if you don’t have an immediate partner. - Austin Freeman. Photo from World Amatelur Pair Go Website.


First IMSA Elite Mind Games Announced; 4 North American Players Needed

Saturday September 19, 2015

The first International Mind Sports Association Elite Mind Games (IEMG) will be held January 5-12, 2016 in Huai-An City, Jiangsu Province, China. The North American team will comprise three male players and one female player. All participants will have travel, accommodation, and visa application expenses paid for. Players will all receive prize money, a minimum of €1,000, which, after IGF surcharge, will be around $1,000.

Online playoffs will be held on the weekend of October 3-4 with tie-breakers on Oct. 10-11 (if needed). Players will need to budget the entire weekend as the online selections will likely begin at 9:00am PST / 12:00pm EST and end in the late afternoon/evening.

Eligibility: US/Canadian Citizenship. US players must have had continuous AGA membership for a year and have been resident in the US for six of the last 12 months. Interested players must email by Sunday, September 27th.

According the International Go Federation, the format will be the same as the fourth Sport Accord World Mind Games (men’s team event, women’s individual event, pair go). The Men’s team competition is a round-robin, the women’s is a double-elimination with extra games to determine all places, and pair go is a straight knockout.



WMSG Qualification tournaments start this month in Boston

Monday September 14, 2015

The selection process for the 2016 World Mind Sports Games (WMSG) will begin at the upcoming American Chang Qi Cup in Cambridge, MA, on September 26 – 28, says AGA President Andy Okun.   Although plans have not been formally announced, it is expected that the 2016 WMSG will be held in Macau, China. Prior WMSG competitions (2008 in Beijing, and 2012 in Lille France) invited large teams for both women and men. “That means that some players will have a chance to make the team with lower ratings than usual for our international events,” said Okun. “The existing qualification points system is being modified to include the lower ranks, and will be used for selection of both the men’s and women’s teams.” Other tournaments intended to be used as qualifiers include the Cotsen in Los Angeles, the New Jersey Open, The Maryland Open and at least two online tournaments; other tournaments that meet certain criteria may also be designated as qualifiers. The points system will also select for invitations to the North American Masters and may be used for other invitations that come up from time to time, Okun said.


Chang Qi Cup Registration Breaks 100

Tuesday August 25, 2015

Chang Qi Cup Logo

The inaugural American Chang Qi Cup, scheduled for September 26-28 at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA, is shaping up to be an exciting event, and over 100 players have already registered.

The 2015 Chang Qi Cup is the first time that the semi-finals of an international professional tournament will be held in North America. Four top pros from China will compete for a berth in the Chang Qi Cup finals. This event will also include the inaugural American Chang Qi Tournament, an AGA-rated tournament with significant cash prizes. The American tournament features a top prize of $4,000 for the open section, and generous prizes for all division winners.

Hosted by the American Collegiate Go Association (ACGA) and the Shanghai Ing Foundation, special activities are planned, including the Tsumego Challenge, in which competitors solve rapid-fire go problems for small prizes. And for participating college students only, there will be an extra event: free bowling on Saturday night. Similar to the AGA E-Journal’s expanded video coverage at this year’s US Go Congress, local organizers are planning complete coverage of the event through video streaming. Professional commentary on the Chang Qi Cup games, commentary on the top boards of the American tournament, and even special interviews will all be broadcast.

Hotels for the weekend are filling up quickly, so the ACGA urges registrants to book soon. Visit the website for details and registration.