American Go E-Journal » Your Move: Readers Write

Your Move/Readers Write: Naked go classes; Who wrote ’42 Life story? Next AlphaGo series?

Sunday August 27, 2017

Naked go classes: “The August 12th issue of The Economist relates the decline of Japan’s public baths,” writes Phil Waldron. “From a high of 2700 there are now fewer than 600, and those that remain are struggling to reinvent themselves. Some are turning into spas to cater to upscale clientele or foreigners while others are putting on performances and concerts. The Economist mentions one particularly creative establishment, however, which has gone a different route. In an attempt to appeal to the younger crowd, it now offers naked go classes!”

Who wrote ’42 Life story? “Does anyone know who wrote the May 18, 1942 go article in Life magazine?” wonders Jonathan Chetwynd. “Most articles have a writer, but not this one…”
Email journal@usgo.org 

Next AlphaGo series? “When will the next set of Alphago videos be put on YouTube?” asks George Shutack.
Production has just begun; we’ll keep you posted.

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Your Move/Readers Write: More on go libraries; Redmond on Kobayashi? Clued in

Wednesday August 16, 2017

More on go libraries: “As a retired librarian, I was very pleased to read about go books in various libraries (Go books go global…and local,” writes Robert Barber. “When I worked at the University of Illinois at Chicago, I prevailed upon the Collections Development people to purchase at least 20 books for the library.  Later, Mark Rubenstein and I gave a dozen books to the Evanston Public Library.  And recently, Mark 2017.08.16-crossword‘inherited’ the library of our friend Ian Feldman.  Mark plans to make the books available to the members of his club.”

Redmond on Kobayashi? “I hope you can get Michael Redmond to do a review of his recent game with Kobayashi Koichi, either for the EJ Members Edition or as a You Tube video,” writes Bob Gilman.
A Redmond video commentary on the game with Kobayashi is in production, as is the next set of Redmond’s Alphago-AlphaGo commentaries.

Clued in: In the New York Times crossword no. 0705 (Wed, Aug. 9th), the clue for 43-across is “Travel edition of a classic board game?” reports Roy Schmidt. “Partial spoiler,” Schmidt adds, “our game is part of the answer!”

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Your Move/Readers Write: Crosstabs, explained

Saturday August 12, 2017

“I’m looking at the Crosstabs page on the AGA web site but there is insufficient information to make heads or tails of it,” writes Chuck Bell. “Is 2017.08.12_crosstab-screengrabthere an explanation of these tables anywhere? They don’t appear to me to be self-explanatory.”

The AGA Crosstab system is a very odd duck. It was really something that was semi-cobbled together and since then has had very few changes. In the current/existing system the page reads as: Player – ## (this is the number from the TD system), Rounds and results (Try hovering your cursor over the numbers, it will show you the name of their opponent), and overall result for the tournament. In the rounds columns the numbers display as something like “4B+”. This means that the the player’s row you’re looking at played player #4, they played as Black, and they won the game. If you look at player 4, it will show they played player X, played as White, and lost the game. Hovering over the result will again show you the name of the opponent.
The system is far from perfect but the reality is that we’re an all-volunteer organization and often have to settle for “good enough.” That said, we’d welcome anyone who’d like to jump in and help. Most of the software that the AGA uses is on GitHub. This set of code can be found here. Anyone who would like to work on projects like these, please email us at operations@usgo.org or journal@usgo.org
- Steve Colburn

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Your Move/Readers Write: Go Clock Recommendations

Friday March 10, 2017

Leap PQ9903: “The MGA battled about this for about a year before finally settling on the Leap PQ9903,” writes Neil 2017.03.10_Leap PQ9903Ritter in response to the February 25 Your Move/Readers Write: Looking for go clocks posting, noting the clocks were more affordable through Alibaba compared to Amazon. It’s “perhaps important to note explicitly that this clock doesn’t do Canadian Byoyomi particularly well,” Neil adds. A thread summarizing the Massachusetts Go Association’s discussion on the topic can be found here.
 
DGT3000: “I believe the best game clock for the money is the DGT3000,” 2017.03.10_DGT3000suggests Dave Baran. “I am aware of three clocks that currently available that have both Japanese and Canadian byo-yomi:  the DGT3000, the Cronos, and the Duel Timer.” Dave notes that the Excalibur is an affordable option that might be available on EBay, but has been discontinued from production. Dave adds that, “the byo-yomi time control on the Zmartfun II chess clock is inadequate.”
 
Amazon.com: “You can get just about anything from Amazon.com,” points out Ralph Meyer, suggesting searching for “Chess Clocks”.
- Edited by Brian Kirby
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Your Move/Readers Write: Looking for go clocks

Saturday February 25, 2017

“I am looking for suitable electronic clocks for go,” writes Agustín. “The AGA website makes an amazing work at listing 2017.02.25_clockswhere to get go equipment of different qualities, but unfortunately it is almost entirely about go stones, boards and bowls, but not clocks. The ideal clock I am looking for would be “Cheapest available clock in the US which supports both byo-yomi (5 x 30 seconds, 5 x 1 minute, etc) and Canadian Byo-Yomi (20/25 stones in 10/15 minutes). Since you’re probably using clocks in every tournament, I am hoping that you can point me on the right track.”
Send your suggestions to us at journal@usgo.org

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(More) Catching Up: BGA Go Crossword; Top European players on AlphaGo and the future of go; Go in New Master of Orion

Saturday December 17, 2016

Top European players on AlphaGo and the future of go: “I was in shock,” says Thomas Debarre 2016.12.17_Diana Koszegi6d of France. “I felt a bit disappointed with the quality in the sense that not one game was countable at the end,” said Merlijn Kuin 6d of The Netherlands. “The 21st century is and will be ‘the age of go,” says Mateusz Surma 1p of Poland. “The future of go isn’t easy, but not because of AlphaGo,” says Diána Kőszegi 1p of  Hungary (photo). Kim Ouweleen interviews with top European players on AlphaGo and the future of go are available on the European Go Federation’s website.

BGA Go Crossword: “I see from your recent item, Catching Up: Obama on go, AlphaGo helps predict the future, and more, that Roy Laird is a crossword fan,” writes British Go Journal Editor Bob Scantlebury. “Others with a love of crosswords as well as go may like to check if their British Go Association (BGA) membership is up to date if they have one (or sign up , if not), as the upcoming Winter edition of the quarterly British Go Journal (BGJ) will feature a bumper, go-themed2016.12.17_Psilon Races Master of Orion 19×19 competition cryptic crossword.” But be warned, Scantlebury says, “this is a British-style cryptic crossword, as featured in UK broadsheet dailies — and with a difference.” The BGJ is free to BGA members; the Winter edition will be out in early January and sent out in hard copy, as well as being available in pdf online to those who are members.

Go in New Master of Orion: “I was recently playing the new Master of Orion video game, a remake of the renowned turn based strategy classic video game,” writes Guillermo Molano. “This game takes place in a fictional galaxy where many races compete while expanding by colonizing solar systems. While playing I found a solar system named Go, another one named Fuseki, and a last one named Tesuji. I don’t know if there are more systems with more Go references. Perhaps its not that surprising since Master of Orion is a strategy game and it was developed by a studio in Argentina. That country has the strongest players in all Latin America.”

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Your Move/Readers Write: Mysterious Water Bottle

Wednesday October 5, 2016

“My God! It’s full of water.” “Do you know what this quote is referencing?” asks Austin Harris. “It is written on our 26th Go Congress water bottle from Colorado Springs in 2010. We assume it’s referencing something funny that happened at the previous Go Congress. We’ve been dying to know. Any clues? Or anybody else that might know?”
Email journal@usgo.org with your answers/guesses.

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Your Move/Readers Write: Pokemon Go?! Senior Invitation in Sunnyvale

Tuesday July 19, 2016

Pokemon Go?! “I thought I was into real go but they stole the name!! How disappointed was I?” writes Ted Terpstra after2016.07.18_pokemanGo reading about Pokémon Go in The New York Times recently .

Senior Invitation in Sunnyvale: “I would like to encourage go players 50 and older to meet at the Sunnyvale, CA, Senior Center on Thursdays between 2:30pm and 5:30pm,” writes Jean DeMaiffe, responding to our Beginner at 80, Still Playing at 90 7/10 EJ post. “The Senior Center chess players have graciously agreed to share their playing room with us. For now, I am providing two go sets plus a few books, all of which are stored with the chess players’ equipment.” Although DeMaiffe, who’s taught beginners for years, says she won’t always be able to attend, “if a go player contacts me in advance, I will happily make an effort to attend any particular meeting.” Reach her at 408-930-5888 or jean@dougandjean.com.
UPDATE (7/29): This invitation has been retracted due to circumstance beyond DeMaiffe’s control; we regret any inconvenience.

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Your Move/Readers Write: E-Journal Forum (Part 2); Where’s the 2015 Yearbook?

Monday June 27, 2016

E-Journal Forum (Part 2): In another response to Eric Osman’s query about a forum for responses to articles in the E-Journal, Steve Colburn also notes that the AGA has a sub forum on Lifein19x19.com. “This is for AGA stuff much like there is for other organizations. There are a few AGA officials who also read/comment on Reddit.”

Where’s the 2015 Yearbook? “I tried looking through the AGA website to find the archived zip file with all of the yearbook 2015 sgf files,” writes AGA member Shane, “but I’m having a difficult time locating it on your website. The news article doesn’t seem to link me to where to find the file and a website search for ‘year book’ didn’t yield much better results. Help?” In a related email, Dan writes “I am a member who cannot figure out how to download the 2015 Go Yearbook. Please advise.”
The Yearbook is only for AGA members, so it’s not posted on the website; look for your June 22 Member’s Edition of the E-Journal, which contains individual links to the game commentaries published in 2015, as well as in a handy zip file. 

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Your Move/Readers Write: Thanks, Janice; Yearbook Zip File; E-Journal Forum?

Saturday June 25, 2016

Thanks, Janice: “Thanks to Janice Kim for sharing her views on AlphaGo vs Lee Seedol and ‘The Master of Go,’” writes Jean deMaiffe.  “I very much enjoyed her article ‘with my morning coffee.’”


Yearbook Zip File:
 “Thank you for creating the convenient zip file of all 2015 AGA sgf files,” in the 2015 American Go Yearbook, writes AGA member Frank Brown. ” I downloaded it and expect many hours of study to ensue.”

E-Journal Forum?
“I challenge the oft-expressed claim that playing go contributes to our personal development,” writes Eric Osman. “Is there a popular forum for having discussions about things we want to respond to that we originally read in the AGA E-Journal?”
We always welcome letters to the editor. If you think a longer response might be of interest, we also welcome queries about possible submissions for articles as well.  

Thanks.  /Eric

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