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John Dolva

GO

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Ok, Norman, we'll run with that.

While there seems to be indications that under some rules the game can be dealt with otherwise, and there have been a couple of mistakes that we've let go for the sake of playing it out, I think finishing up with the count process is a good idea.

On this image I've marked the neutrals,plus the stones that are yours and mine. The ones taken off count as two ( a won stone and a won territory point )

By my count that adds up to 88 to me and 47 to you. ie I win by 41, which of course, given it is a first for you, is very good on your part and somewhat embarrasing to me as it's a wide margin that goes against a formality re saving face and not letting the opponent lose by more than about 5.

However as an introduction it has been an honor to play with you.

No doubt you'll be able to find local players and if you (or anyone else) wish to play a game again, please indicate.

I'll await your count.

After, I'll explain how perilously close I came to losing.

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John, I too make it 88/47. I am also slightly embarassed that I have made it difficult for you to beat me by a margin of 5 or less. However, I can assure you that as a learning experience it couldn't have been better.

By the end of the game, of course, I had a much better idea of how I should have started it, and I suspect I failed to grasp some of your helpful hints along the way. I haven't quite got to the point of analysing this game from the beginning, so I would be very interested to know the stage of the game where you nearly lost.

I am intrigued by the general approach to ending and assessing the game, which I think would have a lot to offer to the education system system over here which is fixated on 'norm' - referencing rather than formative assessment!

I am also intrigued by the handicap system that allows an expert to play a novice, and while I think the particular area of the country where I live may be something of a 'Go' desert I am fairly sure I will find a means of continuing.

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John, I too make it 88/47. I am also slightly embarassed that I have made it difficult for you to beat me by a margin of 5 or less. However, I can assure you that as a learning experience it couldn't have been better.

One of the beauties of the game, the lesson never ends. I don't think I can control a game or have enough prescience to guide a game to the traditional 'face saving' stage. I have had it done to me though by a three dan player. That was quite a delighful experience. He played me right down the line and I don't think I ever ruffled his feathers. There are many stories about the game, for example a famous player of long ago who declared that he wished (after playing for 40 odd years) he could come back for another lifetime of learning.

By the end of the game, of course, I had a much better idea of how I should have started it, and I suspect I failed to grasp some of your helpful hints along the way. I haven't quite got to the point of analysing this game from the beginning, so I would be very interested to know the stage of the game where you nearly lost.

Ok, yep, I made some blunders at times, partly because you choose to play tight in the beginning so we played out the left lower corner from beginning to end early whereas there usually are three overall distinct stages; beginning, middle and end. The trick is to play loose but secure in the beginning trying to drive the game as long periods as possible. Consider the board. To surround one point in a corner 2 stones are neeeded, on the side, 3, in the middle 4. ie corner plays are paramount.( there is a saying roughly that he who takes the corners win). take the first line , a stone there is firmly attached to the edge but cut off from the centre, a centre move is ditto to the centre but cut off from the edge. the fourth line is optimum for extension in or out.

However that was educational and served its purpose, You saw what effect the odd left corner move had in the long run. Loose but strong opening connections are paramount. Then the game moves into the fight stage when establishing eyes, and always trying to force play, then the end which is a kind of mopping up stage. All these overlapped here and overall a looser play would have made the game fundamentallyunwinnable for me. Of course I had an advantage in knowing where certain plays are likely to lead.

The sticking point was towards the end last ten odd moves when I started to harp on kos'. If you backtrack you can see me rather desperately filling ko threats for the last 5-8 moves. I didn't really have any so it was a matter of you figuring out that by activating the ko. You had more threats than me and those could yield points plus you would have won the top right corner. I figured the hints were enough so that in hindsight you can see what they meant.

I am intrigued by the general approach to ending and assessing the game, which I think would have a lot to offer to the education system system over here which is fixated on 'norm' - referencing rather than formative assessment!

I'd like to hear more on this, Norman.

I am also intrigued by the handicap system that allows an expert to play a novice, and while I think the particular area of the country where I live may be something of a 'Go' desert I am fairly sure I will find a means of continuing.

Yes, it is a sedentary martial art with honor a large part of mindset. As level a playing field as possible so that both are stretched. You'll progress fairly rapidly from -35 rating to around -5, then it starts getting difficult. :)

You'd probably be surprised what a note in a local shop / community notice board / window can yield re local players.

Edited by John Dolva

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With white having taken 30 stones and black 12 :

with the neutrals marked gray, here is the look of the final board configuration.

post-3136-080626500 1299398291_thumb.jpg

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Thanks Norman, and thank you for the game. Best, John.

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http://gazette.gmu.edu/articles/13994 go game gif

Off the Clock: Physics Professor Touts Merits of Go

June 25, 2009

ehrlich1.jpgBob Ehrlich. Photo by Evan Cantwell

From Aug. 1 to 9, Mason's Fairfax Campus will be host to the American Go Congress, the premier event in American go, according to Bob Ehrlich, chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy and avid go player. He submitted the following article about the game and his longtime interest in it.

By Bob Ehrlich

Go is a fascinating board game that originated in China more than 4,000 years ago. Also known as baduk, wei ch'i, weiqi, and igo, it is played today by millions of people, including thousands in the United States.

In Japan, Korea, China and Taiwan, it is far more popular than chess is in the West. In fact, the congress will probably bring to Mason more than 100 players from Japan, as well as 400 others from all over the world.

It is said that the rules of go can be learned in minutes, but that it can take a lifetime to master the game.

The rules couldn't be simpler. Two players alternate in placing black and white stones on a large ruled board, with the aim of surrounding territory.

Stones never move and are only removed from the board if they are completely surrounded.

The game rewards patience and balance over aggression and greed; the balance of influence and territory may shift many times in the course of a game; and a strong player must be prepared to be flexible but resolute.

Like the Eastern martial arts, go can teach concentration, balance and discipline. Each person's style of play reflects their personality and can serve as a medium for self-reflection.

Go combines beauty and intellectual challenge. "Good shape" is one of the highest compliments one can pay to a move in the game of go. In fact, my passion for the game in part is due to the lessons the game teaches that are applicable to everyday life.

Go-board-animated.gif

The patterns formed by the black and white stones are visually striking and can exercise an almost hypnotic attraction as one "sees" more and more in the constantly evolving positions.

While I am a physicist, the game appeals to many kinds of minds ― to musicians and artists, to mathematicians and computer programmers, to entrepreneurs and options traders.

Ability in the game does not respect age; children learn the game readily and can reach high levels of mastery. I recall on more than one occasion being completely outclassed in a tournament by an elementary school kid!

Because go lends itself to a uniquely reliable system of handicaps, players of widely disparate strengths can enjoy relatively even contests. The game can be a casual pastime for the idle hour ― or a way of life.

Michael Redmond, the only Western player to have won status as a top-grade professional player in Asia, when asked why he had devoted his life to go, replied, "Because I love the game."

Although I fall far short of Redmond's level of skill and generally find myself in the middle of the pack in tournaments, I share the love of the game that all go players have.

Interested parties who want to learn more about the upcoming Go Congress should see www.gocongress.org.

Edited by John Dolva

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note the image is a gif so to see all scroll to it quickly.

what a good next move?

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note the image is a gif so to see all scroll to it quickly.

what a good next move?

It'd be fun if someone would play a game. It doesnt have to go on forever. Often a better feel can be had from a rapidfire game. It's possible to notice the shifts from beginning to middle to end game better.

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