American Go E-Journal » Columns

AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo; Game 28 (Part 2): So many possibilities

Saturday February 9, 2019

Michael Redmond 9p and the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock return with the exciting second half of the 28th game  of the 2019.02.08_AG28-thumbnailAlphaGo vs. AlphaGo selfplay games.

2019.02.08_AG28-thumbnail-redmond-garlock“There’s all these possibilities,” says Redmond, teasing Garlock “You’ve probably forgotten all the different variations we looked at.” Viewer crass syzygy says “Really beautiful variations. Mind blowing,” while Philippe Fanaro says that “‘That’s the good side of dying’ is the highlight of this series.”

These videos are made possible by the support of the American Go Association; please consider joining  today!

Video produced by Michael Wanek & Andrew Jackson.

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Your Move/Readers Write: Even the Gray Lady and her pundits know about Go

Tuesday February 5, 2019

by Terry Benson

In an Op-Ed in The New York Times on Wednesday Jan 30th, columnist Thomas Friedman noted the success of AlphaGo and correctly reported on AlphaZero learning from itself in declaring that the word for the year should be “deep.”  Computers are taking us “deep” and in Friedman’s opinion our institutions are not prepared for it.

Go players were shocked by AlphaGo’s success – we were toppled off the mountain – and we are trying to process what we’ve learned about Go.  What happens when machines can run – not faster – but longer processing years of experience in hours and finding deep patterns – one thing we’ve always considered the essence of being human and of our very human game?

For Friedman, the power of AI machines in the hands of “bad actors” (as he characterizes some whole governments) by going “deep” is scary.

Go players know to look at the whole board and see the flow of the stones. We lose if we get caught paying attention only to our own corner or blindly following our opponent – a crafty machine – around the board.  How can we go as deep?  How can we see what the machines cannot? In game terms, how can we keep control of the evaluating function: our right to decide what is important for people, what should be known, what should be shared, and who will be in control of the machines.

It’s too late to pull the pull.  It’s not possible to put this new genie back in the bottle.  The ancient warning is the same: be careful what you wish for.

Benson, president of the American Go Foundation, is a former president of the American Go Association and former editor of the American Go Journal.
The E-Journal welcomes your thoughts and comments about the game of go and all things related. Email us at journal@usgo.org

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AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo; Game 28 (Part 1): Who’s zooming who?

Sunday February 3, 2019

In their latest in the popular video commentary series, Michael Redmond 9p, hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock, 2019.02.01 AG-AG-28review the first half of the 28th game of the AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo selfplay games. The 50-game series was published by Deepmind after AlphaGo’s victory over world champion Ke Jie 9p in May 2017.

2019.02.01 AG-AG-28-redmond-garlock“There’s a lot packed into this game,” says Redmond. “We start with a slightly confusing fight on the lower side, things slow down for a bit, then there are all these weak groups and it gets a bit confusing to tell who’s attacking and who’s in trouble, so it’s a pretty interesting middle game.” “Buckle your seatbelts!” adds Garlock. Part 2 will be published next Friday, February 8.

These videos are made possible by the support of the American Go Association; please consider joining today!

Video produced by Michael Wanek & Andrew Jackson.

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AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo; Game 27: That kind of a game

Sunday January 27, 2019

2019.01.27_AG-27-thumbnailMichael Redmond 9p, hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock, continue their popular series with a review of the 27th game of the AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo selfplay games. The 50-game series was published by Deepmind after AlphaGo’s victory over world champion Ke Jie 9p in May 2017.

2019.01.27_AG-27-thumbnail-redmondThis game features two of the AG 3-3 invasions, a symmetrical shape and then “group after group appear on the upper side, right next to each other, and we’re going to have fun counting the number of groups,” says Redmond. “So it’s going to be that kind of a game.”

“Simply astounding game,” writes GerSHAK. “One of my favourites so far. Incredible detective work from Michael. Thank you so much.” Adds Rory Mitchell: “Wow! Just…wow!”

These videos are made possible by the support of the American Go Association; please consider joining today!

Video produced by Michael Wanek & Andrew Jackson.

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The Power Report (4/4): Ishida Yoshio scores 1100th win; 2018 stats and recent promotions

Wednesday January 23, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Ishida Yoshio scores 1100th win: In a game in Preliminary C of the 45th Gosei tournament, Ishida Yoshio 9P (also known as 24th Honinbo Shuho) (W) beat Tsurumaru Keiichi 7P by resignation. This was his 1100th official win (to 692 losses and one no-result). He is the 15th player to reach this landmark.

Promotion: To 4-dan: (Ms.) Okuda Aya (50 wins, as of January 18)

2018 statistics: Here are some of the statistics for last year.
Most wins: 1. Shibano Toramaru 7P (second year in a row): 46 wins, 23 losses; 2. Ichiriki Ryo 8P, (Ms.) Fujisawa Rina 4P: 43-23; 4. Fujita Akihiko 6P: 41-8; Onishi Ryuhei 3P: 41-11; 6. Yamashita Keigo 9P: 40-23
7. Mutsuura Yuta 7P: 37-18; 8. Koike Yoshihiro 3P: 36-12; 9. Seki Kotaro 2P: 35-15; (Ms.) Ueno Asami 2P: 35-20; (Ms.) Nyu Eiko 2P: 35-23; Iyama Yuta: 35-26; 13. Kyo Kagen Gosei: 32-13; Kono Rin 9P: 32-16; 15. Hane Naoki 9P: 30-17
Best winning percentage: 1. Fujita Akihiko: 83.67%; 2. Onishi Ryuhei: 78.85%; 3. Koike Yoshihiro: 75%
Most successive wins: 1. Koike Yoshihiro: 19; 2. Seki Kotaro: 15; 3. Onishi Ruhei: 14

Promotions based on 2018 prize-winnings
These promotions are based on the prize-winnings list, but note that there may be players who won more but were promoted by other means, that is, cumulative wins or entering a league, etc. Only prize money for the top seven titles is counted. One 6-dan is promoted, accompanied by two each from the lower ranks. Promotions take effect as of January 1, 2019.
To 7-dan: Fujita Akihiko
To 6-dan: Tsuruta Kazushi, Adachi Toshimasa
To 5-dan: Yo Chito, Ito Masashi
To 4-dan: Onishi Ryuhei, Koike Yoshihiro
To 3-dan: Otake Yu, Hirose Yuichi
To 2-dan: Shibano Ryunosuke (older brother of Toramaru), (Ms.) Kaneko Maki

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The Power Report (3/4): Ueno makes good start in Women’s Kisei; Xie to challenge for Women’s Meijin

Tuesday January 22, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal2019.01.20 Ueno left

Ueno makes good start in Women’s Kisei: The first game in the 22nd Women’s Kisei title match was held at the Hotel Sunlife Garden in Hiratsuka City, Kanagawa Prefecture, on January 17. The defending champion Ueno Asami (W, at left in photo) beat Fujisawa Rina by 2.5 points after a marathon 310 moves. The challenger took the lead in territory early on, but 2019.01.20 Xie WMeijinUeno attacked tenaciously and finally overhauled Fujisawa in the endgame. The second game will be held on January 28.

Xie to challenge for Women’s Meijin: Xie Yimin 6P (left) may be titleless for the first time in over a decade, but you can’t keep her out of the action. In the play-off to decide the challenger for the 31stWomen’s Meijin title, she beat Koyama Terumi 6P by resignation after 179 moves. She will challenge Fujisawa Rina for the title. Koyama, who has won this title four times, was hoping to play in her first title match for 13 years.
Tomorrow: Ishida Yoshio scores 1100th win; 2018 stats and recent promotions

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The Power Report (2/4): League updates; Judan challenger

Monday January 21, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal2019.01.20 Honinbo league

Honinbo League: The fourth round of the 74th Honinbo League has been completed. Instead of one player breaking clear, the position has become complicated, with four players sharing the lead. On January 7, Yamashita Keigo 9P (W) beat Anzai Nobuaki 7P by half a point. That improved Yamashita’s score to 2-2, so he is still in the running to win the league (he’s also helped by his number one ranking). Anzai goes to 0-4, so he looks unlikely to retain his league seat. However, the narrow margin shows that he is not being outclassed. In the second game, played on January 10, Yo Seiki 8P (B) beat Hane Naoki 9P by resig. Yo and Hane are now both on 3-1. The only undefeated player at this point was Ichiriki Ryo 8P, who was on 3-0. On January 17, he played Shibano Toramaru 7P; taking white, the latter beat him by resignation, so both went to 3-1. On the same day, Kono Rin 9P (W) beat Ko Iso 8P by resignation. Kono improved to 2-2, but Ko went down to 0-4. Ko also looks like losing his place, but being ranked number two gives him a slight advantage over Anzai.

Meijin League: Two games in the second round of the 44thMeijin League were played on January 10. Kono Rin 9P (B) beat2019.01.20 Meijin league Mutsuura Yuta 7P by resig. and Shibano Toramaru 7P (W) beat Murakawa Daisuke 8P by 2.5 points. Two more games were played on January 17, and one of them could have a big effect on the league. Suzuki Shinji 7P (B) beat the favorite, Iyama Yuta, by half a point. In the other game, Son Makoto 7P (W) beat Hane Naoki 9P by resignation. On 2-0, Kono is the provisional leader.

 

 

Judan challenger: Murakawa or Takao: The first semifinal of the 57th Judan tournament was played on December 27, with Takao Shinji 9P (W) beating Yamashita Keigo 9P by 2.5 points. The second was held on January 7. Murakawa Daisuke 8P (W) beat Onishi Ryuhei 4P by resig.
Tomorrow: Ueno makes good start in Women’s Kisei; Xie to challenge for Women’s Meijin

 

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The Power Report (1/4): Chen Yaoye wins 1st Tianfu Cup; Iyama makes good start in Kisei

Sunday January 20, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Chen Yaoye wins 1st Tianfu Cup: The semifinals of the 1st Tianfu Cup were held on December 21 and the best-of-three final on December 23, 25, and 26. In one semifinal, Chen Yaoye 9P of China (W) defeated Park Junghwan 9P of Korea by resig. In the other, Shin Jinseo 9P of Korea (B) beat Jiang Weijie 9P of China by resig. In the first game of the final, Chen (W) won by resig.; in the second, Shin (W) won by 2.5 points. In the deciding game, Chen (B) won by resig. Chen, who turned 29 on December 16, won his third international title; Shin missed the chance to take his first. First prize is 2,000,000 yuan (about $292,000).

Iyama makes good start in Kisei: The first game of the 43rd2019.01.20 Yamashita 1st move in Kisei Kisei best-of-seven title match was held at the familiar venue of the Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo in Bunkyo Ward on January 10 and 11. It featured a familiar pairing: Yamashita Keigo challenging Iyama Yuta Kisei for the fourth time, including three times in a row from 2014 to 2016. Iyama has held this title for six years in a row; Yamashita (at right in photo, making the first move) has won it five times, including four years in a row. Besides that, Iyama has made one unsuccessful challenge and Yamashita has made unsuccessful challenges to Hane Naoki 9P and Cho U 9P.
Yamashita drew black in the nigiri. Yamashita started out by taking the lead in territory, then fell behind, and then upset Iyama’s lead. However, Yamashita apparently thought he was still behind, so he started a risky fight and perished. He resigned after 172 moves. If he had played more peacefully, he would have had a good chance of winning.
The second game will be played on January 21 and 22.

Tomorrow: League updates; Judan challenger

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Redmond’s Reviews, Episode 13: Redmond 9p v. Cho U 9p

Saturday January 19, 2019

Michael Redmond 9p, hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock, takes a break from analyzing the AlphaGo self-played games2019.01.18_Redmond-ChoU2018-screengrab to review his own recent game against Cho U 9P. This game was played just a few days after Cho U became the Meijin and Redmond — who went into this game with a 2-2 record against Cho — says he can see 2019.01.18_Redmond-ChoU2018-screengrab2“how much studying with computer programs has changed Cho’s game.” Cho is “a very precise player,” Redmond says, which makes him very tough in the middle and endgame, but “even top professional players have a hard time assigning exact values to positions in the opening” and “the big change I saw in this game is that Cho seems much more confident in his opening, and knew exactly what the computer values were for the various positions in the opening.” Redmond also shares his own experiences with studying with a go AI.

These videos are made possible by the support of the American Go Association; please consider joining today!

Video produced by Michael Wanek & Andrew Jackson.

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AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo; Game 26: Using dead stones

Saturday January 12, 2019

Michael Redmond 9p, hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock, continue their popular series with a review of the 26th 2019.01.12_AG-26-thumbnailgame of the AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo selfplay games. The 50-game series was published by Deepmind after AlphaGo’s victory over world champion Ke Jie 9p in May 2017.2019.01.12_AG-26-redmond-garlock

Black builds a large moyo and White occasionally drops a stone in, and they’re all dead, until they come back to life. “It’s not really clear what White’s trying to do, but eventually all of the dead stones get used a lot, which is the main story of this game” says Redmond. “Thank you so much for continuing this series!” posted Yi Sheng Siow. “I always get a big smile on my face when I see a new one of these pop up!” added Rory Mitchell. “I’m really looking forward to watching it right after I finish cooking supper!”

These videos are made possible by the support of the American Go Association; please consider joining today!

Video produced by Michael Wanek & Andrew Jackson.

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