American Go E-Journal

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).

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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

Congress Photo Album: Sunday, August 5

Sunday August 5, 2012

Top right: Pro simul with Chinese professional Weitang Liang 9P; Middle right: Mingjiu Jiang 9P lectures; Bottom right: Youth Lightning Tournament; Bottom left: Nolan Bushnell models his KGS t-shirt and American Go E-Journal cap while beating Chuck Robbins; Middle left: analyzing their round 1 U.S. Open game; top left: Wisonet Cup State Team Go Tournament organizer Ronghao Chen watches Round 1. Photos/Collage by Chris Garlock

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Hikaru no Go Creator Hotta Yumi Goes Behind the Manga

Sunday August 5, 2012

Hikaru no Go manga creator Hotta Yumi provided a fascinating peep behind scenes when she sat down Sunday with American Go E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock to explain the process of creating the popular manga. With her editors needing final artwork eight weeks before publication, Mrs. Hotta said that months of painstaking work went into each new manga. Depending on the storyline, “I sometimes was working on three episodes simultaneously,” she said, through translator Akane Negishi. She would roughly sketch out the stories and then send them to Obata Takeshi, the artist who would turn them into finished artwork. At the same time, the rough drafts would go to the Nihon Ki-in, where staff would find games that would best illustrate the story, and the game records or positions would also go to Mr. Obata, who would add them to the finished artwork. “The go was of course taken very seriously,” Mrs. Hotta said, “That’s why so much effort was necessary. We really wanted to help make go more accessible to a broader audience.”
photo: Hotta Yumi (l) shows drafts of Hikaru no Go manga; report by Chris Garlock, photos by Steve Colburn

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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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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Atari Founder Nolan Bushnell on Go, Pong, Life and Changing the World

Saturday August 4, 2012

A standing-room-only crowd packed into Washburn Hall at the U.S. Go Congress opening ceremonies Saturday night, where – after a brief but entertaining Congress welcome from Congress Directors Paul Celmer and Peter Armenia — Atari founder Nolan Bushnell regaled the rapt audience with tales of how he came to found the company that helped define the computer entertainment industry for years. The talk was the keynote presentation of the ongoing International Go Symposium (see below for Sunday’s schedule).

“Isn’t go a great game?!” Bushnell began, to cheers and applause. “Go allows us to engage both side of our brain,” Bushnell continued, “but it requires humility and patience, both of which are hard for Americans. But wouldn’t the world be a better place if everyone played go?” He then described how he learned go from a fellow chess club member in college, was instantly entranced by the game, and then got interested in arcade games while working in an amusement park. Punctuating his own history and that of the computer game industry with jovial asides – “I turned down an offer to buy a third of Apple for $50,000; I regret that.” – Bushnell described developing classics like the Atari 2600 gaming console and Pong, which drew knowing nods from many in the crowd of gamers, some of whom had brought their favorite Atari game cartridges to be autographed. “Go has been really important in my career,” Bushnell said, as he described the ups and downs of a long and fascinating life. “Just like in a game of go, at the end, you pick up the pieces and start over again.”

Now CEO of Brainrush, Bushnell has gotten interested in education and in the effects of aging on the brain, and he described software his company’s working on that he said has gotten tremendous results by focusing on play instead of the usual approach of “presentation, practice, test.” Bushnell concluded by throwing his arms wide and proclaiming that “I love go players” and confiding that he often plays on KGS (“Often anonymously”) but that he needs “a two-martini account” for those days when he just wants to have fun playing.

International Go Symposium Schedule for Sunday, August 5
A = Attending Congress; S = Skype presentation; also streaming live online. Papers and web links will be posted online after the Symposium; details will be announced in the E-Journal.

Sunday August 5

9:00    Thomas  Wolf  Go Theory S
Basic Seki in Go

9:45    Chen Zu-yan  Poetry S
The Art of Black and White: Weiqi in Chinese Poetry

10:30  Roxanna Duntley-Matos  Education and Community Organization  A
“Playing Under and Pushing Through the Stones”: Privileging Transnational Go Network Formation and Minority Leadership from Lower to Higher Education.

11:15  Peter Shotwell  History
The Origins of Go Strategies in Classical Chinese Grammar

12:00-1:00  Lunch 

1:00-2:30  A Panel Discussion on Go inChinaToday:
Marc Moskowitz  A
Wei Qi Wonders: Conversations About the Game of Go in China (Film)
and
The Challenges of Categorization for an Increasingly Globalized Game

Stephanie Mingming Yin (China1-dan Professional)  A
Experiences in Growing Up in the Profession and Observations on the Chinese Methods of Education  Joshua A. Guarino (Go Congress Japanese-English Interpreter) A
Cross-cultural memoirs

Peter Shotwell  (Go Historian)
Go in China1985

2:30 Hotta Yumi  A
Hikaru no Go creator – Interview
Paul Barchilon  (Vice-President and Youth Coordinator, American Go Foundation: 2006 Teacher of the Year)  Akane Negishi  (Translator)

3:15 Terry Benson  Rules/Attitudes A
Spreading Go – Rules and Attitudes Which Make That Hard

A Panel Discussion on Go on How to Start a Go Program in Your Community
Moderated by Roy Laird, PhD, LCSW-R (Program Director, New York City Children’s Aid Society)

Play Go and Grow: Why Every School and Library Should Have a Go Program  A
Paul Barchilon (Vice-President and Youth Coordinator, American Go Foundation: 2006 Teacher of the Year)

Developing Youth Programs
Peter Freedman, PhD (Portland, OregonChildren’s go organizer); 2011 Portlandand Mexico Children’s Tournament)  A

Teaching Children to Become Go Players
Siddhartha Avila (Program Director, Mexican Youth Go Community; Univ.of Michigan Cultural Ambassador Go Program)  A

The Art of Go in Education and Presentation of the International Children’s Go Art Contest

photos: (top right) Nolan Bushnell delivers Symposium keynote speech; (middle left) Bushnell talks with Congress attendees after the speech, including the EJ’s Steve Colburn (right) and Todd Blatt (left); (middle right): Congress Directors Paul Celmer (standing, center) and Peter Armenia (seated at right) with Chris Kirschner (left) as the Ghost of Congresses Past. photos by Chris Garlock

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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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