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Updated: 12 hours 58 min ago

Go Quiz: Who Pulled Off the “Miraculous Upset”?

Fri, 04/04/2014 - 23:25

Last week’s quiz: Before turning to the poll results, here’s my personal all-time favorite go reference. This Camel ad from the late 1970s should have worked.  It was certainly popular, often featured on the back covers of numerous magazines. While not the best board, the bowls are nice, the board position reasonable, the decor splendid and our hero dutifully takes black against the master – top marks.  And for coolness it hits the all-time high. I mean, he has a piercing gaze, cool mustache, is at home in a world few men ever see and women bring him drinks.  Unfortunately, it only got more folks addicted to smoking, and not go.

I found all of your responses interesting, from the mysterious “Love and Go” by Wando Wende (on which I could not find any information) to the intriguing – and new to me — French cartoon “Code: Lyoko”, which certainly looks interesting and features the characters playing the game and discussing it, reports Alison Fotness.  Brian Kirby offers “PopCo”, a novel that features go prominently. Others chose brief references in “Tron: Legacy” and “Da Vinci’s Demons” while I was surprised no one chose “Star Trek” appearances or the cool background ambiance appearance in “24″.  It was great to hear from old friend David Erbach, editor of the early journal “Computer Go,” who suggested Henry Kissinger for featuring go in one of his books.  Ramon Mercado came up with the interesting choice of “ATARI”  the computer game company.  Full marks go to Drew Chuppe for selecting the film “Heaven Knows Mr. Allison”.  This World War II drama features Robert Mitchum as a soldier stranded on a Japanese-occupied island.  While breaking in to a store-room for food, he tensely hides while two soldiers play a couple of games.  A popular film, an accurate depiction as well as a wonderful use of the game as part of a suspenseful part of the plot makes this perhaps the greatest western film reference, but at the time, as an obscure game played by the “enemy”, it failed to gain go much popularity here.  Finally, Michael Goerss intrigued me with his spotting of go in Martin Sheen’s hotel room in “Apocalypse Now” but I must confess, I do not see it.

Tenuki-ing to those chosen by more than one of you, the films “A Beautiful Mind” and “Pi” garnered two votes each.  I must say I was expecting “A Beautiful Mind” to be the winner.  The Best Picture Oscar winner certainly wins the popular honors, and many folks got interested in go as a result, but the go scenes are less than convincing and minor.  Darren Aronofsky’s “Pi” does a better job and go is more central to the plot, thanks no doubt in part to credited guidance by “Go Advisors” including former AGA President Barbara Calhoun, Michael Solomon and the late Don Wiener (misspelled in the credits as “Dan”).  Sadly, this first effort by the director of many critically acclaimed films was not widely seen.  Your quizmaster will have to go along with the choice of 6 of you: “Shibumi” by Trevanian. The thriller features go-related section headings and a marvelous, lengthy section about the main character’s training and playing of the game.  And if a film version ever makes it to the screen the novel’s number one position could be solidified (or destroyed).  Many, many players were intrigued by the game as presented in the book, and learned to play as a result. So, until Steven Spielberg makes “The Tesuji Kid” about an unpopular but cute middle schooler who comes across a small asian garden while hiding from some bullies, meeting three old men playing go who teach him lessons from the game, which become lessons in life, foiling the bully, impressing his/her teachers and getting the boy/girl – Trevanian is number one.   Congrats to Steve Miller of Ramsey, MN, this week’s winner, randomly chosen from those who suggested Shibumi.

This Week’s Quiz: Hearty congratulations to Gu Li for taking game three of the jubango; could this be the start of a comeback? In the Japanese top titles, the matches are best of seven.  Who was the first player to come back from an 0-3 deficit and win a title in what was termed a “miraculous upset”?  Was it Sakata Eio, Rin Kaiho, Kato Masao or Cho Chikun?  Click here to submit your responses and comments.

Categories: World news

AGA On-Line Simuls Continue Through June

Thu, 03/04/2014 - 22:30

Simultaneous games with strong players continue to be available to AGA members in the AGA Community Room on KGS. For April, simuls are now scheduled in the evenings beginning this Saturday, April 5 and continuing on Wednesday, April 9, Saturday, April 12, and Wednesday, April 30.

The full simul schedule through June is available here.  “Volunteers are adding simuls to the schedule on an on-going basis, so keep checking it for the latest information,” urges organizer Bob Gilman.

Since this program began in October 2013, there have been 128 games played. “These simuls are a great way to test your strength and develop your game,” Gilman says. “You will have the chance to learn tactics and strategies from a stronger player. There will generally be a brief review afterwards. And don’t worry about being ‘too weak.’ These are handicap games and intended to help you learn.”

The games are played in the AGA Community Room on KGS (under “Clubs”) in the Rooms List. If you need room access, email bobgilman.aga@gmail.com with your AGA ID number and KGS username.

 

Categories: World news

Battle for 2nd Bailing Cup Cup Begins

Thu, 03/04/2014 - 12:14

Competition has begun for the second Bailing Cup, a biennial event backed by the Guizhou Bailing Group, a Chinese pharmaceutical company, and held under the auspices of the International Go Federation, the People’s Government of Guizhou Province, the Guizhou Sports Bureau, and the professional go associations of China, Japan, and Korea.

Four preliminary rounds were held March 15-16 in Beijing, and the 48 survivors then joined 16 seeded players from China, Chinese Taipei, Japan, and Korea in the main tournament, with the first round held on March 18. Click here for Round 1 results and games, along with some of the preliminary games.

One of the winners in the prelims was a young Chinese pro who had recently won the Shanghai Jianqiao Xinren Wang tournament. This event is known as the Rookie King tournament, but this year’s king was Wu Zhibao 5P (Yu Zhiying, at left), a female player. It’s extremely rare for a go tournament that is open to both men and women to be won by a woman; in the entire history of professional go it has happened perhaps five times. Three of those victories were by Rui Naiwei 9P (right), who Wu faced in the first round of the Bailing Cup, losing by resignation.

The second round has yet to be scheduled; the ultimate winner of the second Bailing Cup is due to be decided next year.
- based on James Davies’ detailed report on the IGF website; game records from www.go4go.net/

Categories: World news

EuroGoTV Update: UK, Serbia, Germany

Thu, 03/04/2014 - 12:00

UK: Andrew Kay 4d led the Birmingham on March 29. Behind him were Alex Kent 3d in second and Alistair Wall 2d in third. Serbia: Also on March 29, the 3rd Memorial Milos Vucicevic finished in Kragujevac with Zoran Jankovic 4d in first, Dragan Dubakovic 3d in second, Mihailo Jacimovic 1k in third. Germany: Bernd Radmacher 4d (left) bested Jonas Welticke 5d at the 4th Recklinghaeuser Guzumi in Recklinghausen on March 30 while Martin Ruzicka 2d came in third.
– Annalia Linnan,  based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news; photo courtesy of EuroGoTV

Categories: World news

Three Top-Player Congress Tourneys Merged into Single Super-Event, AGA Announces

Wed, 02/04/2014 - 18:39

An expanded prize pool and a new tournament structure are planned for the strongest players at this year’s US Go Congress. “The AGA Board, in close consultation with strong players across the country, felt strongly that we needed to raise the stakes, the prestige and the competitiveness of the top tournaments and this is the result,” said American Go Association President Andrew Okun. 

In recent years, strong players competed in three separate main tournaments at Congress, the 6-round US Open open section in the mornings, the 4-round North American Masters Tournament (NAMT) for North American professionals and qualified amateurs in the evenings, and the 4-round Strong Player Open, also in the evenings. 

In the new structure, these three tournaments will be combined into a single 9-round US Open, which will serve both as the top section of the U.S. Open and as the NAMT. The U.S. Open winner will take a top prize of $5,000 and the NAMT-eligible player with the strongest result will become the North American Masters Champion and win $2,000. Other prizes will be paid to other finishers both overall and in the NAMT.  All players 7d and above – and all players who qualified for the NAMT — will be eligible to compete in this new event. Strong players who wish only to play the traditional six rounds of the US Open may do so instead, but will not be eligible for the top prizes. 

The U.S. Open/NAMT will take place during the six mornings of the US Open – at the 2014 US Go Congress in New York City August 9-17 — with an additional three rounds in evenings during the week. Click here for the FAQ on these changes.
photo of 2013 NAMT and SPO playing room by Phil Straus 

Categories: World news

1st Washington Open Baduk Championship Set for April 26-27

Wed, 02/04/2014 - 13:12

The East Coast is getting a new major tournament. The first Washington Open Baduk Championship will be held in Northern Virginia on the weekend of April 26-27. With a top prize of at least $1,000, and cash prizes for every section, “this two-day tournament is not to be missed!” says organizer Allan Abramson. Click here for more details and to register

The Championship is sponsored by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, the Korean Cultural Center – DC and Scorpion Sport Inc. in L.A., co-hosted by the Korean Amateur Baduk Association (KABA) and the American Go Association (AGA), and organized by the NOVA Go Club, the Baltimore Go Club, and the Korean-American Go Association.

The Championship will be a rated five-round, one hour per player event. AGA membership is required. No entry fee, and lunch is free. Other attractions will include a rapid tournament on Friday night, lectures by Myungwan Kim 9P and another Korean professional, and simuls with the pros. “A packed weekend of competition and fun for all,” says Abramson. 

Categories: World news

Your Move/Readers Write: Real Cotsen, Fake Chickens

Wed, 02/04/2014 - 12:30

“Can you confirm that the Cotsen dates (Cotsen Dates Confirmed for 2014-2016 4/1 EJ) are real, not an April 1st joke?” writes Anders Kierulf. “It just seems so unlikely after the dates moving around every year and being announced very late. Also, the 2016 dates should probably be Oct. 22-23, not Oct. 23-24, as that’s not a weekend.”
Yes, the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Cotsen dates are real, though as Kierulf notes, the 2016 dates are actually October 22-23. The Dumb Cluck? 9×9 Go Reportedly Solved story, on the other hand, is not real. Our apologies for any confusion. 

Categories: World news

Go Quiz: Best Western Go Cultural Reference

Wed, 02/04/2014 - 12:00

For this week’s quiz, in celebration of go’s prominent role on MTV’s Teen Wolf, as covered in several recent E-Journal reports, let’s hear from you on what you think is the best Western cultural reference to go. Please limit answers to English language and it must be something featuring or mentioning go, but not directly about go or go instruction. And it needs to be original – so the obvious choice of Hikaru No Go does NOT qualify. I will judge the best response on such objective criteria as coolness, popularity, appropriateness and correctness of the reference. This can be books, TV, movies, advertising or news events.

Deadline: 5P Thursday. Nominations so far include Shibumi by Trevanian, Tron: Legacy, Darren Aronofsky’s movie “Pi,” and “A Beautiful Mind” with Russell Crowe. I look forward to hearing from all of you!

Click here to submit your nomination.

- Keith Arnold HKA, quizmaster 

Categories: World news

European Go Federation and CEGO Launch Online Training for Pro Students

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 23:00

The CEGO Online Training for European professional students has just launched. The online training is part of the Pre Pro League, part of the European Go Federation’s (EGF) new contract with the CEGO Chinese investor group to establish a European professional system (European Go Federation Inks Deal With Chinese to Promote Go in Europe 7/5/2013 EJ). ”This is another part of the EGF-CEGO cooperation focused on developing European professional go players,” says EGF president Martin Stiassny. “I wish all the players great games with a lot of fun and success.”

The online training is primarily for students who have been studying in Bejing for the last six months (read more about it on Benjamin Teuber’s blog), but to provide some training access for other players who will participate in the European Pro Qualification starting in Strasbourg in May the number of CEGO Online Training participants was increased to 16.

An initial round was played between eight players to figure out the league division and now five series will be played with an A and B league with 6 players each. A League players include Zhao Baolong (teacher), Pavol Lisy, Ali Jabarin, Ilya Shikshin, Cornel Burzo and Andrij Kravets. In the B League are Dusan Mitic, Fredrik Blomback, Viktor Lin, Benjamin Teuber, Lukas Krämer and Zeno van Ditzhuijzen. Li Ting is the other teacher.

Follow the action in the “Euro Dream Team” room on KGS, where you’ll find nearly daily games (20:00 GMT+2 starting) top games, through June 20. Click here for complete details, including full player roster and bios.

 

Categories: World news

Go Camp Registration Opens

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 22:59

The AGA Go Camp is pleased to announce that registration for the 2014 camp is now open. Camp will be held from August 3 to August 9, the week before Go Congress, at YMCA Camp Kresge in White Haven, PA, about a 2 hour drive from New York City. Camp directors Amanda Miller and Nano Rivera invite campers of all skill levels, and between the ages of 8 and 18, to join them for a week of go-playing and fun. Youth who played in the NAKC or the Redmond Cup are eligible for a $400 scholarship, and need-based scholarships of up to $250 are also available. For more information on the latest camp-related news, and to download the registration forms, please visit the camp website at http://www.gocampeast.org/. Any questions can be e-mailed to Amanda Miller at agagocampeast@gmail.com. - Story and Photo by Amanda Miller

Categories: World news

Go Spotting: “Orange is the New Black”

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 22:30

“Credit to my wife and daughter for spotting a go board in the Netflix series ‘Orange is the New Black,’” reports Vermont Go Club President Dave Felcan. “In Season 1, Episode 12 (“Fool Me Once”) around the 29:30 mark, a go board can be spotted on a desk next to the main characters. Its there for about 5-7 seconds, so it was a nice spot.”

Categories: World news

Redmond on Guanzi Pu: “Beyond Tsumego”

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 22:00

“I have the Guanzi Pu pdf (‘New on the AGA Website: Classic Chinese Problem Collection‘ 3/16 EJ) in other formats already, but this one is very nicely done,” writes Michael Redmond 9P. “That collection is one of the best of what I call classic tsumego collections, but on the other hand, it wasn’t all problems that would now be called tsumego. It includes many endgame sequences, and some positions in which there is more than one feasible way to play. That is typical of the ancient Chinese collections, which were published before the modern definition of tsumego was established. From the professional viewpoint, those indefinite problems actually add value, although they could confuse weaker players.”

Categories: World news

Cotsen Dates Confirmed for 2014-2016

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 05:15

Not only have this year’s Cotsen Go Tournament has been confirmed and scheduled for October 25-26, according to AGA President Andy Okun, but dates have been set for 2015 and 2016 as well. For the third time running, this year’s event will take place at the Korean Cultural Center-Los Angeles (KCCLA), in the Mid-Wilshire district of Los Angeles.

“Our thanks to Eric Cotsen (left) for his continued hosting of this outstanding event, and our gratitude as well to retired Ambasador Suh Dae-won (right), the Korean consulate in Los Angeles and the staff and management of KCCLA for providing such a beautiful venue,” said Okun. The two-day, five-round event will include lunch, some pro go teaching and massage therapy and, Okun hopes, “a vendor table or two and other goodies.” As in previous years, the E-Journal will provide full on-site coverage, broadcasting top-boards live on KGS.

In addition, though venues have not been locked down, two more Cotsen tournaments have been agreed to between Cotsen and the AGA for Oct. 24-25, 2015 and Oct. 22-23, 2016.
- photo: Cotsen (left) and  Ambasador Suh Dae-won at the 2013 Cotsen; photo by Chris Garlock
Update: the 2016 dates have been corrected.  

Categories: World news

Dumb Cluck? 9×9 Go Reportedly Solved

Tue, 01/04/2014 - 05:05

A team of researchers at the University of Brightloch have announced that 9×9 go has been solved. Inspired by recent improvements in computer play by Montecarlo algorithms, they hypothesized that “If a computer can play at random andplay good games, what prevents a more powerful device (like a brain) to do something similar?”

So the researchers picked a team of 100,000 chickens and taught them to play go. “It was hard in the beginning, but once a few knew how to play they started teaching others,” they report. “After a couple months all were playing as 30k players and we set them loose in a field filled with 9×9 go boards and bowls with stones. Also some grain and water.”

A month later the chickens were gone, and the same position was repeated on every 9×9 board: perfect play, with white winning by 0.5 points with 7.5 komi. The chickens had also left a note. It said “So long, and thanks for all the grain.”
- based on a report on Nordic Go Academy by RBERENGUEL; thanks to Go Game Guru, which posted it on their Facebook page

Categories: World news

This Week’s Go Calendar: Berkeley and Seattle

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 14:12

April 5-6: Berkeley, CA
Workshop with Yilun Yang 7P
Steve Burrall sburrall@comcast.net 916-688-2858

April 6: Seattle, WA
Monthly Ratings Tournament
Brian Allen manager@seattlego.org 206-632-1122 206-545-1424

Get the latest go events information.

Categories: World news

Gu Li Strikes Back, Winning Game 3 in MLily Gu vs Lee Jubango

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 02:32

Gu Li 9p (right) chalked up his first win in the MLily Gu vs Lee jubango, forcing Lee Sedol 9p to resign in game 3 on Sunday, March 30. Lee and Gu faced one another in Chengdu – the capital city of Sichuan, China – having traveled straight there after their game at the 10th Chunlan Cup two days earlier.

After Lee won game 2 of this historic jubango in February, he led the 10 game match 2-0. Since Gu lost game 2 in regrettable circumstances, many go fans reasonably surmised that Lee would have the psychological advantage going into the third game, but over the last week, Gu defeated Lee in the 4th Zhaoshang Cup (a China vs Korea team tournament) on March 23, and followed it up with another win at the 10th Chunlan Cup on the 28th, which may have helped to restore Gu’s confidence. The win is heartening not only for Gu, of course, but for go fans worldwide who are doubtless hoping the jubango will go the full 10 games.
- Based on Go Game Guru’s report, which includes the game record and An Younggil 8p’s brief analysis. 

 

Categories: World news

U.S. Go Congress Registration Opens with Special Rebate Offer

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 02:31

Registration for the 2014 U.S. Go Congress has opened with a special offer: $50 cash for using your AGA Capital One Visa credit card. Use it to pay for the Congress and you’ll get an extra $10, for a total of $60. “This year’s Congress is in New York City, one of the continent’s premier destinations,” says AGA president Andy Okun. “To help Congress attendees enjoy themselves in the Big Apple, we’re offering $50 cash walking-around money to any Congress attendee who at the time of registration shows us their AGA Capital One Visa credit card and tells us, hand on heart, they have bought something with it.” 

Possible New York City uses for this cash windfall include museum entry, cab fare, hot dogs, pretzels with mustard, lemonade, pizza slices “or oysters,” says Okun, noting that author Mark Kurlansky has argued that New York should really be called “The Big Oyster”. Oysters used to be plentiful in New York, and when European settlers first arrived, it is estimated that half of the oysters in the world were in New York’s harbors, inlets and riverbeds. Although that’s no longer the case, “$50 should get get you a dozen Blue Point oysters, a bowl of clam chowder and two beers at the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station,” Okun says.
One payment per credit card. The AGA affinity card is a no fee credit card, “so it costs you nothing to apply and use the card,” says Okun. The AGA receives a one-time payment of $50 the first time you use it and a percentage of your spending on the card thereafter. Click here to apply for the card and here to register for the Congress.

 

Categories: World news

Matthew Burrall & Tai-An Cha Top Davis/Sacramento Tournament

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 02:25

Matthew Burrall 6d and Tai-An Cha 5k topped their divisions in the Davis/Sacramento Go Club’s Spring Tournament at the Arden-Dimick library in Sacramento on March 29, 2014. There was a field of 17 players ranging in strength from about 20 kyu to 6 dan. “This was the largest number of player that we have had at one of our tournaments in quite a while,” reports Willard Haynes.
photo: Matthew Burrall 6d (left) and Tai-An Cha 5k

Categories: World news

NOVA Cherry Blossom Report

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 02:20

The annual NOVA Cherry Blossom tournament was held on Saturday, March 29, at George Mason University Law School in Arlington, VA. Thirty-nine players participated, including long-distance commuter Paul Celmer from North Carolina. “A special visitor was Mr. I. Moon, Chairman of the Board of the Fairfax County Board of Education, who is promoting go and recruiting go teachers for his elementary schools,” reports organizer Allan Abramson. Reach Moon at IMoon@fcps.edu.

Winners Report:
First place: Justin Teng, 7D, 3-1; Muyuan Wang, 3D, 4-0; Julian Erville, 1K, 4-0; Darren Bias, 4K, 4-0; Barreal Anderson, 9K, 3-0; Steve Manning, 11K, 3-1; and Jonathan Luo, 15K, 3-1
Second place: Josh Lee, 5D, 3-1; Nathan Epstein, 1D, 2-1; Frank Luo, 1K, and Frederick Bao, 2K (tied at 3-1); Matt Payton, 5K, 2-2; Bob Crites, 9K, 3-1; Liam Royce, 11K, and Kevin Stefanik, 11K (tied at 2-2); and Caroline Scheck, 15K, and Sarah Crites, 18K (tied at 2-2)

Categories: World news

Go Quiz: Best Western Go Reference?

Mon, 31/03/2014 - 02:18

THE LITTLE RED BOOK: For many, this volume of the Elementary Go Series (available from Kiseido and SmartGoBooks) was the book they were waiting for – the book that taught the West how to fight. Rarely a day goes by without someone responding to a query on KGS with the simple directive “Read Attack and Defense”. When your quizmaster did a poll on the best English-language go books, Akira Ishida and James Davies’ effort received many praises. 13 out of 17 of you read the position correctly. As for those who consult his joseki dictionary regularly, you are better players than your quizmaster, for you open your go books and do not simply look at the covers, but a look at the cover of “The Dictionary of Basic Joseki” will show that it was authored by Ishida Yoshio (and translated by John Power). For your information, the two “fors” in sentence one, four and five of this week’s column are for Roland Crowl, who pointed out my egregious grammatical error in last week’s question and missed by my editor. Congratulations to Reinhold Burger of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, this week’s winner, selected at random from those answering correctly.

THIS WEEK’S QUIZ: Speaking of polls, this week, in celebration of go’s prominent role on MTV’s Teen Wolf, as covered in the E-Journal, let’s hear from you on what you think is the best Western cultural reference to go. We will limit the answers to English language and it must be something featuring or mentioning go, but not directly about go or go instruction. And it needs to be original – so the obvious choice of Hikaru No Go does NOT qualify. I will judge the best response on such objective criteria as coolness, popularity, appropriateness and correctness of the reference. This can be books, TV, movies, advertising or news events. Click here to submit your nomination; I look forward to hearing from all of you.
- Keith Arnold, HKA, EJ Quizmaster.

Categories: World news