After-school go club teachers in Seattle have often used handouts with go problems, but this year they have started giving each student their own workbook with their name on it. The results were surprising: the beginners really liked the books, sometimes more than playing. One student told me he was going to sign up for the spring session just so that he could finish his workbook! The go clubs are in local elementary schools, and most of the students are in grades 1-3. The Center is mostly using English translations of the “Level Up” books by Lee Jae-Hwan, with some of the “Speed Baduk” workbooks by Kim Sung-Rae as well.
The workbooks have been an education for the teachers as well. The books use a lot of repetition, and progress much more slowly than the typical introductory class at the Seattle Go Center. “Level Up” doesn’t introduce the concept of “two eyes” until the end of the 2nd volume. Apparently, the students like the repetition, as it makes the problems seem easy. But over time, they get a thorough grounding in the fundamentals. The “Level Up” series has 10 volumes; the “Jump Level Up” series follows that.
Finding the beginning volumes of either series in the U.S. can be hard, but the “Level Up” books can be ordered directly from Korea. They are shipped by international surface mail, so it takes a while for them to arrive. One order took about 2 weeks, another order, about 8 weeks. To order books, contact Baduktopia at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information on Baduktopia can be found on Facebook. Photo/Report by Brian Allen
Li Keqiang’s Go Metaphor: In a departure from previous years, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang did not cite any traditional Chinese sayings or poems at a recent news conference after the annual National People’s Congress. Instead, he used a go metaphor to convey his message. “In weiqi – a chessboard game invented by the Chinese – one has to both plan the big picture and also get the key moves right,” he said, explaining his strategy in managing China’s economy.
- Based on a report in the South China Morning Post; thanks to Melanie Manion and Dave Weimer for passing it along.
More on Legal Go Positions: “A colleague of mine 30 years ago offered a very clever way of accurately estimating the number of legal go positions, (Number of Legal 18×18 Go Positions Computed 3/17)” writes Eric Osman. “His name is Peter Sichel and his clever way was this: generate random board arrangements, and see what percentage of those are legal. If you want more accuracy, generate some more! The estimate for the number of legal positions is merely your percentage of legal ones multiplied by the total number of possible positions which of course is 3 to the square of 19 power.”
Get the latest go events information.
The AGA Go Camp will take place from July 18th through July 25th at YMCA Camp Kern in Oregonia, Ohio (just 40 minutes from Cincinatti). Directors Amanda Miller and Nano Rivera return to organize the event, and they invite campers of all skill levels, between the ages of 8 and 18, to join them for a week of go-playing and fun. More information regarding the camp will be available soon, and registration should open within the next two weeks, keep your eyes out for future announcements in the E-J. Potential campers who participated in the NAKC or Redmond Cup are eligible for a $400 scholarship, and need-based scholarships will also be available. Any questions can be e-mailed to Amanda Miller at email@example.com. -Story and Photo by Amanda Miller.
The School Teams Tournament has extended their registration deadline to this Wednesday, to catch any last minute teams that didn’t have time to sign up. The tourney starts this Saturday. All matches will be played online, and schools from Canada, the US, and Mexico are all invited. Scholarship and cash prizes will both be distributed. To register, fill out the form here, by March 25. More information may be found on the AGHS website.
Players from the University of Tokyo edged out players from UCLA in an online friendship match on Saturday, February 14. The University of Tokyo team defeated the UCLA team with a 3-2 record. Players from both teams are active members of their university go clubs. On the top board, Chaohao Pan, the UCLA team captain, yielded to Kentaro Tsutsumi after he lost a string of key stones when trying to capture Tsutsumi’s invading white dragon. On the second board, Norman Tsai from UCLA lost to Hikaru Ishikawa in a game that was peaceful and balanced until the eightieth move, when Ishikawa fatally punished an overplay by Tsai. Leo Zhang scored UCLA’s first victory with a win on the fifth board against Takaya Matsuura, whose mistake in the early endgame cost him the life of a huge group. The game on the fourth board was also decided by an endgame error, but in this case it cost UCLA’s Chenyi Zhu the game against Keito Tabuchi. UCLA’s other win came from Izuki Matsuba, the only club member from Japan, who defeated his compatriot Shuhei Nakajima with a solid lead throughout the game. “It is a great experience to play with the Japanese players,” said Chenyi Zhu. “They are strong, but I am confident that the victory will belong to us the next time.“
Julie Burrall 1d topped the Davis/Sacramento Go Club’s Spring Tournament at the Rancho Cordova library on March 14. There were 10 players. Burrall won the upper division, and Tai-An Cha, 5k, won the lower division. The library co-sponsored the event and advertised it at the library. “In addition to the tournament, we set up an area to teach beginners about go,” reports Willard Haynes. “We introduced the game to five people. We also celebrated Pi Day with a chocolate cream pie.”
photo: John Patterson teaching.
The Galway Main Tournament is coming !
After a nice winter warm up, it’s time to get your tesujis sharpened again !
All information, location and registration forms can be found here
The tournament starts on Saturday 25th of April at 10:30, we hope to see you all for a joyful week-end in Galway !
The tournament will have different categories so beginners and under-18s welcome !
See you soon,
The Galway Go Club team
Number of Legal 18×18 Go Positions Computed; 19×19 On The Horizon: “It took about 50,000 CPU hours and 4PB of disk IO, but now we know the exact number of legal 18×18 Go positions,” johntromp wrote in a recent post on slashdot. “Seeking computing power for the ultimate 19×19 count,” the post continues. “Thanks to the Chinese Remainder Theorem, the work of computing L(19,19) can be split up into 9 jobs that each compute 64 bits of the 566-bit result. Allowing for some redundancy, we need from 10 to 13 servers, each with at least 8 cores, 512GB RAM, and ample disk space (10-15TB), running for about 5-9 months.”
Thanks to Steve Colburn for passing this along.
Latest XKCD Go Comic: In a possibly related development, here’s the latest go comic from xkcd, “A webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language.”
John Power, Japan Correspondent
China Beats Japan in Agon-Kiriyama Play-off: The 16th Agon Kiriyama Cup Japan-China Play-off was held at the Kyoto headquarters of the Agon sect of Buddhism on March 14. Representing China, the 17-year old Ke Jie (right), winner of the Chinese version of this title, beat Iyama Yuta of Japan, so China won this title for the 12th time in a row. Holding white, Ke secured a resignation after 146 moves. Iyama seems to be in the worst slump of his career. Besides this defeat, he lost the two title matches he played at the end of last year and he has just lost three games in a row in the Kisei title match. The seventh Kisei game is going to be extremely important for him.
Hungarian Schoolkids Championship: The Hungarian Schoolkids Championship, a class C tournament, played on 3/7/2015 in Budapest, Hungary, was won by Dominik Boviz 4d (photo), second came Viktor Toth 13k and third was Barnabas Kollner 8k. Result table.
Trigantius: The Trigantius, a class A tournament, played on 3/7/2015 in Cambridge, United Kingdom, was won by Charles Hibbert 3d, second came Andrew Simons 4d ( photo ) and third was Alex Rix 3d. Result table.
In-seong’s Spring Go Camp: Set for April 16-19 near Freiburg, Germany. Info/registration here.
Get the latest go events information.
The 13th World Students Go Oza Championship was held on February 24 and 25, 2015, at the Ginza Internet Forum in Tokyo. The contestants were sixteen university students: ten from the Far East, three from Europe, two from the Americas, and one from Oceania.
The event was organized by the All-Japan Students Go Association, Nikkei Inc., and Pandanet, with the cooperation of the Nihon Kiin and the International Go Federation. For the eighth time, the winner was Chinese. This year it was Su Guangyue, a fourth-year law student who had been runner-up in 2013. He defeated Johannes Obenaus (Germany), Chidsanupong Jangmark (Thailand), and Park Jongwook (Korea) in the first three rounds. Meanwhile, Yeh Kang-ting (Chinese Taipei) was doing equally well, beating Petr Kouba (Czechia), Tsukada Karin (Japan), and Niwa Junya (Japan), but in the deciding fourth-round game between the two undefeated players, Su Guangyue (black) successfully invaded the top left corner and then the upper side, leaving white about 20 points behind. Shortly afterward, he was reporting victory to his father, Su Demin, in Luoyang, China.
According to an article that appeared in the Luoyang Evening News the next day, Su Guangyue took his triumph rather calmly. He told his father he felt 'relatively happy', but winning came as no surprise. After finishing second two years ago, he had been determined to finish first this time.
The article went on to describe how Guangyue had learned to play go almost before he learned to talk, by watching his father play. Seeing how much his son liked the game, his father enrolled him in a go class at a Luoyang primary school. Within a year, Guangyue had run out of opponents, so his father started taking him to clubs where grownups played, making great efforts to persuade them to treat his son seriously. After three more years, Guangyue and go had become inseparable, and his father decided to pay his room, board, and tuition to train with the Henan Provincial Go Team, where he could get professional instruction. Later, Guangyue went alone to Beijing for more professional training, but in 2011, finding himself still an amateur, he decided to apply to the Shanghai International Studies University. He was accepted on the strength of this go accomplishments, and began to combine university coursework with his go playing. He seems to thrive on serious study, both on and off the board. 'I've never had time to feel homesick or be lazy, and I love playing go, so I never feel tired,' he said.
In the rest of the field, SOS points put Yeh Kang-ting third, behind Korea's Park. Fourth to seventh places also went to students from the Far East (Hong Kong, Korea, and Japan). Johannes Obenaus defeated Chidsanupong Jangmark and Ke Yi-ning (Chinese Taipei) to finish 8th. Zhu Haichen (U.S.A.) defeated Johannes Obenaus and Laura Avram (Romania) to take 9th place. Full results and the record of the Su-Yeh game are here.
- James Davies (photos courtesy of the Nihon-Kin)
The Manhattan Go Club and Seattle Go Center top the first month of the new AGA Chapter Rewards program, earning 150,000 and 125,000 points, respectively. AGA chapters earn points when they get new or renewing members or when their members play rated games. Small and medium clubs get an extra multiplier to earn points faster. “We got off to a great start in January with new and renewing memberships” says Rewards Coordinator Gurujeet Khalsa. Seventy one chapters earned a total of 2,412,500 points, “almost $2,500 that chapters can get reimbursement for expenses related to go promotion.” Click here to see chapter-by-chapter results for January, and details on how points are calculated. Activity by members unaffiliated with a chapter still earn points in an AGA pool (see instructions here on how to affiliate with a chapter). To redeem points, take a picture of a receipt with a smartphone and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put in a one line description of what the go promotional activity was (e.g. “Advertisement for Cherry Blossom tournament”). Also include the chapter name and the name and address for reimbursement. Reimbursement is to the person listed as the chapter organizer or to a club account with the chapter name. Address any questions to email@example.com.
Former Korean insei Mark Lee took home the $700 first-place prize at the 2015 Southern California Go Championship, held the weekend of February 28-March 1 in Monterey Park, California. Seventy two players from Southern California and as far away as the San Francisco Bay area, Arizona, Oregon and Atlanta, Georgia participated in the tournament, which featured a total prize purse of $3,000 and was organized and directed by Kevin Chao. Thanks to sponsorship by the World Journal and American Asia Culture Exchange Association, the event took place at the spacious headquarters of the Los Angeles division of the World Journal (http://www.worldjournal.com/page-about_us-e/).
Open Section: 1st place Mark Lee (5-0), 2nd place Danny Ko (4-1), 3rd place Youwhan Kim (4-1), 4th place Qipeng Luo (3-2), 5th place two-time defending champion Evan Cho (3-2).
Dan Section: 1st place Tyler Oyakawa (5-0), 2nd place Brandon Zhou (4-1), 3rd place AGA president Andy Okun (4-1), 4th place Ted Drange (4-1), 5th place Hanhua Li (4-1)
Upper Kyu Section: 1st place Suttiat Boonchuen (5-0), 2nd place Julie Burrall (4-1), 3rd place Aijun Song, 4th place Alfred Foung (4-1)
Mid Kyu Section: 1st place Ross Secrest (4-1), 2nd place John Bulcher (4-1), 3rd place Michal Lebl (4-1)
Lower Kyu Section: 1st place Dowson Yang (4-1), 2nd place Derek Su (3-2), 3rd place Vivie Truong (3-2)
Photos: (top right) James Guo, president of World Journal L.A., presents the first place trophy to Mark Lee; tournament playing venue. photo by Kevin Chao.
by John Power, EJ Japan Correspondent
Yamashita Draws Level in Kisei, Forcing Decisive Game 7: The sixth game of the 39th Kisei title match was held at the Gyokushoen Arai inn in Izu City, Shizuoka Prefecture, on March 11 and 12. Taking black, Yamashita Keigo 9P (right) defeated Iyama Yuta 9P by resignation after 189 moves. Yamashita has now won three games in a row, so the title match goes down to the wire. The final game will be played on March 19 and 20.
Xie Defends Women’s Meijin Title: The second game of the 27th Women’s Meijin title match was played at Heian Jogaku University, a private women’s university in Kyoto also known as St. Agnes’ University, on 11 March. Xie Yimin, playing black, forced Suzuki Ayumi 6P to resign after 177 moves and so won this title for the eighth year in a row.
Europe’s newest professional go players are Mateusz Surma (left) from Poland and Ilya Shikshin from Russia. Surma took first place in the European Pro Qualification tournament, held March 6-8 in Pisa; Shiksin was second. They join Pavol Lisy and Ali Jabarin, who were the EGF’s first pros last year. Click here for details on the 2015 tournament, including links to some of the tournament games. The four EGF professionals are now qualified for the Grand Slam Tournament in Berlin coming up April 3-6.
- Martin Stiassny, EGF President
San Diego Go Club members taught go to all interested and played exhibition games at the Tenth Annual Cherry Blossom Festival at the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park in San Diego on March 7 & 8. Thousands came out to the garden in 70 degree weather to see the bursting cherry blossoms on over 150 trees. A new $3,000,000 expansion of the garden, including a tea house next to a water fall and koi pond, is almost compete. Club volunteers were kept busy both days from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., teaching go to eager parties ranging in age from 5 to 85. So many people were eager to learn go that they had to queue up for lessons. Many copies of “The Way to Go,” donated by the American Go Foundation, were given to those who showed interest in learning the game.
- report/photo by Ted Terpstra, President, San Diego Go Club. Photo: San Diego Go Club member Les Lanphear (right, in hat) explaining the intricacies of go;
To keep a good pace and have a little (a wee ?) go reading moment, we decided to revive the IGA newsletter.
We are happy to publish here the 2015-Q1 edition ! You will find a biting editorial, some news of the latests events (not including the Dublin Confucius Cup which will be covered in the next Newsletter), a technical note on how to organize a go event and some games comments.
Of course to make it more and more complete, feel free to contribute in any way, the easiest one being probably to review one of the last game you found interesting and to send it to be published in the newsletter.
To read it, it’s here : IGA Newsletter, Q1 – 2015
Philippe, in the name of all the happy contributors of the Newsletter
On March 13th, Philippe won by resignation against Tom.
On March 11th, Noel won by resignation against John.
On March 8th, Philippe won a lost game against James.
On March 5th, 2015 the first of the remaining TOP8 games was played: Philippe Renaut vs. Tiberiu Gociu.
It was a very tense game until White managed to live in Black’s territory. Philippe won by Resign.
The remaining games are as follows:
Philippe Renaut 1 – 0 Tiberiu Gociu
Philippe Renaut 1 – 0 James Hutchinson
Philippe Renaut 1 – 0 0 Thomas Shanahan
Thomas Shanahan 0 – 0 Tiberiu Gociu
Thomas Shanahan 0 – 0 James Hutchinson
James Hutchinson 0 – 0 Tiberiu Gociu
Roman Pszonka 0 – 0 John Gibson
Roman Pszonka 0 – 0 Noel Mitchell
Roman Pszonka 0 – 0 Peter Kasko
John Gibson 0 – 1 Noel Mitchell
John Gibson 0 – 0 Peter Kasko
Noel Mitchell 0 – 0 Peter Kasko