American Go E-Journal

BadukMovies: Mid-Level Videos and a Great Game Archive

Monday July 15, 2013

Every week for the past year or so, BadukMovies co-founders Peter Brouwer and Kim Ouweleen have added an “episode” to their archive of nearly 80 short videos aimed mostly at aspiring mid-level players. The clear, bite-size chunks of information seem easy to digest, and many of the early ones are free (click on still at right for a sample). You can also subscribe to BadukMovies Pro series for €8/month for exclusive access to additional material. The content is created by Korean 9P Cho Hye-yeon and two experienced authors, Yoon Young-sun 8P and Kim Sung-rae 8P. Another remarkable feature is the pro game database. The “pattern search” function is pretty cool. Place stones on the board, select an area and you can search an archive of more than 47,000 pro games and find all the games where that pattern appeared and see how those games came out. The free lectures are great for mid-level players; it looks like BadukMovies Pro is more advanced.
- Roy Laird

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Go Spotting: Brit Folkies Bert and John

Sunday July 14, 2013

Legendary British folk musician, the late, great Bert Jansch was keen on go. He used to play often with John Renbourn, a fellow member of British folk-rock band (The) Pentangle, whom he had befriended on the UK folk circuit.

In 1966, year before the formation of Pentangle, they recorded an album together, Bert and John (1966, Transatlantic, released in America  with extra tracks 1969, by Vanguard, as Stepping Stones). The album’s cover picture shows the pair enjoying what looks to be a rather peaceful game of go.

The 1992 film of Bert Jansch’s career, Acoustic Routes, was re-released UK-wide and on DVD earlier this year. It is a documentary presented by top British comedian Billy Connolly, who was a good friend of both musicians and who performed on the circuit as a banjoist before breaking through as a comic. In a recent Jansch retrospective on BBC Radio2′s Folk Show, Connolly recounted in an interview with presenter Mark Radcliffe how Jansch and Renbourn played go continually between takes during the filming. Sadly, although a clip of the interview is still available, this anecdote was edited out.

Jansch and Renbourn feature in the British Go Association’s page of famous westerners who have played go too, where a link to more pictures of the two playing go can be found, taken from the booklet issued with the CD of Bert and John.
- Tony Collman, British correspondent for the E-Journal; album cover photo courtesy of blog of Portugese sixties music fan The Red Hippie Teenager

Categories: Go Spotting
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AGHS Calls for Officers

Saturday July 13, 2013

The American Go Honor Society  (AGHS) has published their officer applications for the upcoming 2013-2014 school year. “Are you interested in joining the core team of one of the largest youth organizations dedicated to go,” asks Eric Chen, outgoing Co-President.  The officer positions include Vice President, Treasurer, Promotion Head, Tournament Organizer, and Secretary. “This dedicated board of members will run the renowned annual School Team Tournament, in addition to several other events, and strive to spread the game of go amongst the youth of the U.S. Come join us in our go-craze frenzy! You never know where you might go,” adds Chen.  Applications are due August 18th, and can be downloaded on the aghs website. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.

EuroGoTV Updates: Serbia, UK, Russia

Saturday July 13, 2013

Alexandre VarushovSerbia: Lazar Manojlovic 5d defeated Dragan Dubakovic 3d at the 46th City Championship Finals in Kragujevac on July 7. Misa Alimpic 3d placed third. UK: At the Milton Keynes in Open University, Bruno Poltronieri 2d bested Toby Manning 2d while Michael Cockburn 1k came in third. Russia: The Under 20 Russian Championship finished July 2 in Saint Petersburg with Alexandr Vashurov 6d (left) in first, Stepan Popov 3d in second, and Grigorij Fionin 4d in third.
— Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

Go Classified: Teacher Wanted

Saturday July 13, 2013

Go teacher needed in Skokie, IL. We are looking for a weiqi teacher for the Xilin North Shore Chinese School (Sunday school in Skokie, IL.) Click here for details and contact info.
Categories: Go Classified
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Go Spotting: Doraemon

Saturday July 13, 2013

Doraemon is seen studying go in an episode of the popular anime.   The series is about a robotic cat who travels back in time from the 22nd century to aid a fifth grade boy, Nobita (seen in the background at right).  Doraemon debuted in 1969, and became one of the longest running anime in Japan, and was also a huge hit in China.  It is regarded as a Japanese cultural icon, and generations of kids have been gently influenced by the charming cat and his wise lessons.  Image from weibo.com/chessnews, thanks to Taylor Litteral for the suggestion.

Categories: Go Spotting
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Pandanet-AGA City League 10th Round This Sunday

Friday July 12, 2013

The 10th, and for most teams, final round is scheduled for this Sunday, July 14 on Pandanet IGS. At the conclusion of this round, the top two teams in the A League will be invited to play one final playoff round to take place in person at the 2013 US Go Congress on Saturday afternoon, August 2. LA currently has a a slight lead over Boston and Washington, DC in the latest standings. Click here for schedule and results of previous rounds.
- Karoline Burrall 

New Site Features Video Go Lessons

Friday July 12, 2013

Jonathan Hop 3d, author of the “So You Want to Play Go?” series, has opened a new website featuring video lectures for go players of all levels. There are several free lessons for new users to try the service out, and then lessons on various topics can be rented for $1.99.   “Currently the site has about 20 lectures,” says Hop, “but little by little I will put more up.  My goal is to make go more of a game that Americans can relate to, and see as fun and personable.  You’ll find lectures for total beginners, as well as those on more advanced topics like invasions and josekis.”   Hop has given  lectures on KGS, and has been teaching players, from total beginners to single digit kyus, for a number of years.  Check out Hop’s site here.

Your Move/Readers Write: EJ “The way to advertise”

Friday July 12, 2013

“Lawrence Ku is absolutely right,” writes Bob Barber, “the E-Journal is the way to advertise (Go Classifieds Work 7/1 EJ). “I listed my goban, and got five nibbles. And sold it within the week. Sounds like I should list my books here, too.” Send your go classifieds – always free! – to us at journal@usgo.org

Maths Arcade: Games and Puzzles Promote Logical Thinking

Friday July 12, 2013

Go has special advantages as a freestanding activity, but it also has a place among classic games and puzzles. We found it listed recently among the activities British universities are using to “support struggling learners, stretch confident learners, and encourage staff-student interaction in a social and mathematical context,” according to the recently published Maths Arcade: Stretching and Supporting Logical Thinking. The original Maths Arcade was set up by Noel-Ann Bradshaw at the University of Greenwich in September 2010, not to start another “chess club” but to increase interaction between students and to get them talking about the games and the strategies involved rather than just playing competitively. Math students are often shy; at Maths Arcade they could form friendships in a safe environment. The report cites a study indicating that students with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) including Asperger syndrome could also benefit from an activity based on shared interest and enthusiasm for games, puzzles and problem solving.

According to this report, students can play a wide variety of strategy games and puzzles with each other and staff in weekly drop-in sessions. Sessions often take place in the Student Union to attract a wider range of students. Staff also offers math tutorial support. Simply playing games and puzzles creates a logic-based social environment; strategies and modifications to the rules might also be analyzed. Students could explicitly analyze these games to work out whether the person who moves first is more likely to win, examine how to force a winning position, see what happens when the rules are modified slightly, and even design their own strategy games.

Students particularly liked the opportunity to spend time and play these games with staff outside the classroom environment. Some even brought their own puzzles and games along as the Café offered the unique opportunity to play with other like-minded people. Individuals and groups often spent the entire session attempting to understand best gaming strategies and puzzle solutions. As a result, discussions focused on problem-solving strategies, developing proofs and algorithms, and learning and thinking styles arose spontaneously. One student noted that “by choosing games that no one had seen before, it meant that everyone was learning the games and developing their strategy at the same time which resulted in lecturers and students learning from each other and neither having a distinct advantage.” A teacher “thoroughly enjoyed playing against the students where they had as much chance of winning as I did. It allowed for us to interact in a more relaxed but equally intellectual way.”
- Roy Laird

 

Categories: Europe
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