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Japan Go Congress and Osaka Go Camp planned for 2020: A letter from Ryo Maeda 6P

Saturday December 7, 2019

Dear Go friends,

This is Ryo Maeda 6p of Kansai-Kiin. I have been attending the US Go Congress for the past 19 years.

This year the Kansai Kiin will be organizing the 5th Japan Go Congress in Takarazuka (July 10-12, 2019). And also the Osaka Go Camp for the 8th time (June 21- July 9, 2019).

The website for both events is http://www.osakago.com. (Safari users may have trouble opening the website. A different browser is recommended.)

During the camp, we have league games in the mornings and full teaching programs in the afternoons by professional players every day. The teaching programs will be in English.

On holidays, we will also organize some day trips to places like downtown Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, and a two-day trip to Okayama Himeji and kobe, friendship tournament with Okayama Go players and sightseeing includes dinner and Hmeji castle sightseeing.

I promise that everyone can improve quite a lot through the Camp and the Congress and will have a lot of fun!

We are looking forward to seeing you in Osaka and Takarazuka.

Ryo Maeda 6P, Kansai-Kiin

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Categories: Japan,Main Page,Other
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AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo; Game 32: Worrying about life and death

Friday December 6, 2019

Michael Redmond 9P and Chris Garlock return with their latest AlphaGo vs. AlphaGo game commentary, Game 32 of the popular series.

Redmond talks about the new era in Japan, as, after 30 years on the Chrysanthemum Throne, Emperor Akihito abdicated earlier this year — the first Japanese emperor to do so since 1817 — marking the end of the Heisei era and the inception of the Reiwa era, and his son and successor, Emperor Naruhito, was enthroned.

In Game 32, Black plays the mini Chinese Opening, which was also played in Game 31, with the colors reversed. “A very similar move comes up in this game,” says Redmond, “illustrating why the popularity of the mini Chinese has been reduced. It’s another exciting game in which, after a lot of fighting, it ends up in a half-point difference.” Redmond warns Garlock that “You’re going to be a bit more worried this time, I think, about the life and death of some of these groups.”

The series will continue with Friday releases this month, with AG-AG games 33 and 34, as well as a commentary on a game Redmond played with Ishida Yoshio last summer. AG-AG 34 was originally streamed live on Twitch on December 3; follow the AGA’s Twitter and Facebook feeds for announcements of future commentary streaming in this series. “The live streaming brings these commentaries to a broader audience and enables fans to interact with us in real time,” says Garlock. “Special thanks to Senior Producers Michael Wanek and Andrew Jackson for all their work on this series, and to new producer Steven Hu and editor Allen Moy.”
NOTE: Live streams are currently planned for December 9 and 11, both at 7p EDT on the AGA’s Twitch channel; be sure to follow the channel and get notified of live streams.

[link]

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AGF invests in KGS

Wednesday December 4, 2019

-Paul Barchilon, AGF Vice President and KGS Liaison

The AGF is instituting a series of changes to the KGS Go Server to make it more available and more useful as a tool for promoting go. As a first step, KGS+ events will now be free with users able to make a donation – not only to support KGS+ but to cover server costs and fund improvements on the software. All of this year’s saved lectures are now also free, and can be viewed under the KGS Plus menu.

For those that haven’t tried it, KGS+ provides lectures and lessons with professionals and very strong amateurs. In the past, sales of KGS+ provided enough income to pay for itself as well as the server costs. However, attendance has dropped in recent years and the server has not been able to meet its costs for quite some time now. The AGF Board hopes that by opening the lessons to everyone, more people will attend, join the community, and support KGS.

We recognize that the software is now almost 20 years old, and we have a very long list of things we want to improve.  Our current all-volunteer model for making those changes and maintaining the server has not kept up.  Those with the necessary skills are far too busy.  As a first step the AGF will be hiring a software engineer to write a web based registration module. This will allow people to register from any device, including phones and tablets, and from any computer whether it is running Java or not. The current requirement for Java has kept the server blocked entirely from many environments (such as public schools in the US and many international locations).

While the AGF is willing to run KGS at a loss as a service to the go community, we would rather a smaller loss or to break even with any added money invested back into KGS. We hope that by switching to a donation model, we will generate the revenue for upgrades, fund more events, and provide a stable platform for play.  Since the AGF is a 501c3 charity, donations to support KGS will be tax deductible.

Although KGS has seen declining attendance in recent years, there are still between 350 and 800 players on at any given moment. We feel that KGS builds community in a way that other servers don’t.  The chat and room functionality allow people to meet new friends, create virtual go clubs, and learn together with what are still some of the best game editing tools available. Our hope is that the community shares our regard for KGS and will contribute to help keep it afloat. If you would like to donate to the server, through Paypal or with your credit card, click here.

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Dial G for Go… and grisly murder: Knives Out opening weekend

Monday December 2, 2019

Cinemark rewards promo featuring a Knives Out travel Go set

The opening of the new movie Knives Out, starring Daniel Craig and heavily featuring Go, was accompanied by a burst of Go promotion, including Knives Out-themed tournaments around the country and a new travel Go set available through Cinemark. Tournaments held included events in Los Angeles, Austin, and a murder-mystery tournament at the Barfly Denver. Jim Conyngham and Bart Jacob volunteered to assist at the Austin event “and the local staff was quite appreciative,” Jacob reports. “All participants received a Knives Out magnetic Go set and movie / popcorn gift certificates were also handed out. Overall it was fun… Handed out some flyers and introduced a few people to the game.”  
Stay tuned for a review of the Go elements in the movie and more Knives Out related Go news.

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Upcoming Go Events: Portland, Seattle, Miami, Little Neck, Washington

Monday December 2, 2019

December 7: Portland, OR
Myungwan Kim Visits Portland, OR
Peter Freedman pleefreedman1@comcast.net 971-888-9624

December 7: Seattle, WA
Gala Night of Pair Go
Michael Malveux programs@seattlego.org 206-545-1424

December 12-13: Miami, FL
Miami Go Championship 2019
Oscar Silva info@sharinggo.org 305-240-1008 or 305-978-3294

December 14: Little Neck, NY
NYGA Monthly Tournament December
Zhongfan Jian tournaments@ny-go.org 617-921-4105
Stephanie Yin info@ny-go.org

December 14: Washington, DC
NGC Winter Warmer
Gurujeet Khalsa gurujeet.khalsa@nationalgocenter.org 703-626-0777

Get the latest go events information.

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Categories: Calendar,Main Page
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First Southeast Asia GO Congress set for December 15-22 in Singapore

Monday December 2, 2019

The Singapore Weiqi Association is hosting the very first Southeast Asia GO Congress this month — December 15-22 — at the Asian Civilisations Museum in Singapore. Players will enjoy tournaments, lectures, and exhibition matches with guidance from the 16 pros planning to attend, including Chang Hao 9P, Liang Wei Tang 9P, Ding Wei 9P, Cho Hye Yeon 9P, and US Go Congress favorite Maeda Ryo 8P.

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Categories: Main Page,Other,World
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Undefeated players get ready for second day of competition in the California State Championship

Monday December 2, 2019

Evan Lin (left) versus Steven Hu in a crucial 3rd-round game won by Lin

After the first day of the 2019 California State Go Championship, Yifan Wu 6d and Evan Lin 7d lead the pack of 14 players in the open division with 3-0 records.  Close behind with 2-1 records are Sato Kosuke 5d, Bo Luan 6d, Yixian Zhou 6d, Ming Lin 6d and Xiaocheng (Steven) Hu 6d. With three 7 dans and six 6 dans, the Open division is the strongest ever in San Diego. The five round tournament will conclude with two games on Sunday when the titles of 2019 California State Champion, along with the Under-16 Boy and Girl State Champion, is awarded.

Thirty-five players are contesting the various sections of the handicapped division. Undefeated at 3-0 after the first day are Tyler Moor, James Acres, Pasco Kwok, and George Spellman. This year is the second year that the San Diego Go Club has hosted this Thanksgiving weekend event.

-report and photo by Ted Terpstra

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Lee Sedol retirement reported worldwide

Wednesday November 27, 2019

Lee Sedol plays the first move in the first game of the AlphaGo series

Korean Go champion Lee Sedol has officially retired. “The 36-year-old, who scored 18 victories in international competitions and 32 victories in domestic events, submitted his letter of retirement to the Korea Baduk Association (KBA), which oversees Go professionals in South Korea, on Nov. 19, terminating his legendary 24-year career,” reports the Yonhap News Agency. In an interview with the Korean news agency earlier this week, Lee attributed his desire to retire to the rise of AI and the invincibility of programs such as AlphaGo, stating that “with the debut of AI in Go… even if I become the number one, there is an entity that cannot be defeated.” Lee’s retirement and his AI-based reasons were reported internationally by the media with American media such as Vice, the Guardian, Business Insider, and others reporting the story.

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Yutopian to close, offering discounts and seeking potential successor

Wednesday November 27, 2019

Yutopian Enterprises is planning to close their doors and are offering all customers an extra 30% discount with the purchase of three or more books until January 2020. Owners and operators Sidney and Katherine Yuan have been fixtures in the vendor room at the US Go Congress for many years, and have consistently supported the American Go community. “Yutopian has donated to the AGF since 2000, and even more importantly they have donated go boards, stones, and bowls which have been auctioned off for many thousands of dollars to support the AGF and US Go,” says AGF President Terry Benson. “We wish them well and thank them for helping grow the game. We will miss them.”

The Yuans are looking for someone willing to continue the business and take over their inventory. Ability to create a new website and about 100-200 square feet of storage space would be required. If you are interested, please call 1-800-988-6463 or send an email to info@yutopian.com.

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Stephanie Yin 1P appointed AGA VP for Development

Tuesday November 26, 2019

Stephanie Yin 1P has been appointed to the new position of Vice President for Development at the American Go Association. Yin, a professional go player and teacher, will focus on fundraising, seeking sponsorships and potential collaborations with other national and local Go organizations, and more broadly on promoting and popularizing Go in the US. She’ll also be seeking to develop exchange programs for Go students and Go studies abroad. “We’re thrilled to have Stephanie aboard and look forward to some exciting developments in the months ahead,” said AGA president Andy Okun. For details on any of these efforts, contact Yin at stephanie.yin@usgo.org.

-photo provided by Stephanie Yin

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