American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America

2020 US Go Congress cancelled due to coronavirus

Friday April 17, 2020

The 2020 U.S. Go Congress has been canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The following statement was released on April 17 by the American Go Association Board of Directors:

At a Special Board Meeting held on April 15th, the AGA board, with the agreement of the Go Congress organizers in Colorado, voted to postpone the 2020 US Go Congress in Estes Park to a future year, meaning that there will be no US Go Congress in 2020. 

Over the next few weeks, the AGA and the US Go Congress will continue with the cancellation process, including refunding registration fees that were already paid. We expect these refunds to happen over the next month or so; you do not need to reach out to the Congress team to get your refund.

Given the seriousness of the Coronavirus epidemic, the AGA cannot in good conscience bring together our customary crowd from around the country and the world.  The AGA does not take this decision lightly, and plans to resume our annual US Go Congress in 2021, with as much play (both fun and serious) as always.

At this time, the AGA is recommending cancelling all in-person go events (both club meetings and tournaments) through the end of May, but feels that it is too soon to make recommendations about summer events, given that local conditions may vary.

Please stay safe and healthy

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Albert Yen 8d a winner in first round of China-US Internet Go Tournament

Thursday April 16, 2020

The first round of the China-US tournament, organized by the China Weiqi Association and the AGA and coordinated by Stephanie Yin 1P, was held on Tuesday evening, with Albert Yen 7d giving the US team its first win against Ren Ke 6d of the Chinese team. The second round will be held Wednesday evening April 15th on the Fox Go Server. Viewers can tune into the AGA Twitch channel to see the broadcast of the games and game commentary by Cho Hyeyeon 9P and hosted by Stephen Hu.

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Coronavirus impact hits home: the passing of David Saunders AKA dsaun

Wednesday April 15, 2020

Players across the AGA and KGS are mourning the loss of David Saunders, AKA dsaun, who died on Monday March 30th from COVID-19 and pneumonia. A page on Sensei’s Library has been created dedicated to memories of dsaun, particularly the large amount of poetry he wrote and shared with his friends on KGS.

An example: Go is fun // I do not lie // and so is eating apple pie // apple pie is truly great // but playing Go does not add weight.

LGSam remembers his friend in a way Saunders would have appreciated, with “a questionable limerick in honor of the master of questionable limericks.”

Once, there was a great man named dsaun.
A grand Go legacy had he drawn
that will be remembered,
and celebrated too,
into each and every new dawn

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New York Go Honor Society takes New York Go League international

Wednesday April 15, 2020

After initially announcing a league in March of this year that would allow New York players to compete both in-person and online, the New York Go Honor Society has taken the New York Go League international in light of the recent pandemic and the inability of players to meet in person. “We are proud to announce that we will be opening the league to all players, not just those who reside in New York,” says NYGHS vice-president Patrick Zhao. Participants will play two games per week be allowed to schedule their games with their opponents on their own time. Entry and play in the league is completely free and open to any player with a stable rank with any association or credible Go server. All players interested in joining the league should fill out the Google registration form before the registration deadline of May 1, and take time to read the rules and regulations. Players should address any questions to co-president.nyghs@ny-go.org

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China-US Internet Go Tournament set for Tuesday and Wednesday this week

Monday April 13, 2020

The first China-US Internet Go Tournament, organized on the AGA side by Stephanie Yin 1P, will be held this Tuesday and Wednesday, April 14-15 starting at 9:30 PM EDT on the Fox Go Server and broadcast on the AGA Twitch channel. English commentary will be provided by Kim Yoonyoung 8P (Tuesday) and Cho Hyeyeon 9P (Wednesday), hosted by Stephen Hu for the AGA E-Journal.

“With so many of us are feeling isolated from our communities, it is great to have a chance to make some new connections and new friends with other go players around the world,” said AGA president Andy Okun.

The U.S. team includes Andy Liu 1P (New York), Albert Yen 8D (Chicago), Aaron Ye 7D (California), Alan Huang 7D (New Jersey), Kellin Pelrine 6D (Colorado) and Audrey Wang 6D (Indiana).

On the Chinese team are: Hu Yuqing 7D (Shanghai), Cao Ruxu 7D (Zhejiang), Chen Junyu 7D (Jiangxi), Wei Xiaolin 7D (Shanxi), Xia Jun 5D (Jiangsu) and Ren Ke 6D (Hubei).
Note: A setup tutorial video for the Fox Go Server is available on Youtube.

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Redmond on Shusaku vs. Sanchi, 7p Sunday night

Saturday April 11, 2020

The votes are in and Shusaku vs. Sanchi was the people’s choice for Sunday night’s live commentary by Michael Redmond 9. Tune in to the AGA’s Twitch channel at 7p EDT to see Redmond and Chris Garlock review Honinbo Shusaku’s first castle game. “His opponent is the 9th Yasui Sanchi (Shuntetsu), a strong fighter,” says Redmond. “They have opposite game plans, in that Shusaku has Black and tries to play solidly, while Yasui starts by avoiding the Shusaku opening and plays aggressively.”
Also, the Redmond/Garlock “Alphago to Zero” March 12 Twitch stream has now been released on the AGA’s YouTube channel. The two talked about what it was like to provide the English-language commentary for the 2016 match for a global audience with intense media attention, and took questions from viewers. “Their passion for this game is infectious,” said CalmExit.

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Solve Weekly Go Problems for Prizes

Wednesday April 8, 2020

“All are welcome to participate in the AGHS’s weekly go problems program,” says Promotion Head Sophia Wang, “In addition to playing games, practicing go problems is critical to improving reading and practicing new skills. A Google form with a go problem will be sent via email every Sunday with different problems for each level (beginner, intermediate, and advanced).” Sign up for the email list here by April 18, 2020 11:59 pm PT to have a chance at earning points towards prizes.

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Shawn Ray’s new Go club simulator allows clubs to make their own rules

Wednesday April 8, 2020

The coronavirus lockdown has inspired creativity in developers, and Shawn Ray has released a Go club simulator that is designed to give online players more of an in-person Go club feel. After being inspired by Haskell Small’s pioneering use of Zoom for Go club meetings as published in our story on Sunday, Ray was inspired to create an online space for players to interact without building in the usual rules by which Go servers are bound.

A note to Go clubs trying to use this as a way to have a club meeting: please watch Ray’s YouTube video describing this venture and explaining the technical details that you may need in order to make this work. The games in play are not governed by any rule-sets and allow players to interact with each other as the might do in person. Ray recommends that his service be used in conjunction with a voice or video chat service such as Skype or Zoom so that players can speak with each other and work out any issues while using the platform.

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Maryland Open to return in 2021

Monday April 6, 2020

Baltimore Go Club head Keith Arnold has announced that the Maryland Open will be postponed in light of the coronavirus outbreak. “With a heavy heart, the Maryland Open, the AGA’s longest running tournament, will be taking a year off,” says Arnold.  “I will miss all of you and plan to be back, better than ever, next year.”

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China-US Internet Go Tournament seeks players

Saturday April 4, 2020

The AGA is seeking strong players to participate in an online team tournament against players from the Chinese Weiqi Association. The team will consist of six players, of which at least one will be female and at least one will be under 18 years old. The dates are April 15th and 16th at 9:30 EDT / 6:30 PDT each day. Games will be played on the Tencent – Fox Go Server (English Version).  A setup tutorial video is available on Youtube. Players should contact tournaments@usgo.org to express interest by Friday, April 10.

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