News from the American Go Association

October 25, 2004

In This Issue:
WORLD GO NEWS: Cho U Takes Lead In Meijin; Lee Changho Aims To RepeatIn LG Cup; Lee Changho Wins First Game In KBS Cup Finals; Semi-Finals Of Women‘s Strongest Coming Up; Agon Cups Contested; Macfadyen Wins British Championship; Go As Communication Spreading
GO REVIEW: The Way of Go
ATTACHED FILE(S): 2004.10.25.Shodan Challenge 3.Yang Commentary.sgf; 2004.10.25.Furuyama Lesson #24.pdf


JIE LI TO CONTEST FOR SEIMITSU: Jie Li, US Open winner, has been chosen to represent the US next month in an online match against a top European amateur, Cristian Pop 7d of Romania, the winner of which will compete in the SeimitsuTournament in Japan. The event is being organized by the Nihon Kiin.

SIEMON TOPS IN GAGAGAGO: Debbie Siemon won Atlanta‘s first GAGAGAGOTournament last Saturday, September 23 in Alpharetta, Georgia. “Players from all over the South East competed in the first AGA-rated event in Georgiain years and had library patrons searching for introductory go books,” reports organizer and sponsor Ken Labach, who adds “Special thanks  to Chuck Robbins for directing, the library for use of the space, the AGA for providing equipment and the Japanese Chamber of Commerce for assistance in advertising.”
 There were 24 players (6 dan & 18 kyu); the full winner‘s report: A Division (6 players): 1st: SIEMON, Debbie 4/0; 2nd: ZHANG,Peigant 3/1; B Division (8 players): 1st: LANGENDORF, Walter 4/0; 2nd: MCCALL, Greg 3/1; C Division (10 players): 1st SALAZAR, Alexandros 4/0; 2nd CARLSON, Tom 3/1; Best Youth (Under 18): DIAMOND, Jonathon 3/1

YUTOPIAN EXPLORES KOREAN FUSEKI: The latest release from Yutopian, “A Dictionary ofModern Fuseki: The Korean Style,” analyzes contemporary opening strategy indepth, focusing on the new patterns recently developed by the Korean players who now dominate the international go scene. “Modern Fuseki” takes a look at the first 30 moves or so of the most important patterns. “Professionals regard the opening as the most important stage of the game,” says Yutopian, “This is where the foundation is laid for the fighting that will take place in the middle game, determining whether you start the middle game with anadvantage over the opponent or an inferior position that places you at a disadvantage.” More details at  or

“WAY OF GO” AUTHOR POSTS VIDEO LESSONS ONLINE: “From the time I was about 1-kyu till the time I was 5-dan, I started video taping my lessons with Paul Hu, the AGA champ,” says “The Way to Go”author Troy Anderson 5d. “Finally unearthing them, I will start posting them for those who want to see what I went through to get to 5-dan.” See them now at  Plus, find out why Joel Turnipseed was both thrilled and disappointed with “The Way to Go” in his review in Go Review, below.

REBUILDING GOTEACH: Goteach, an e-mail list for people interested in teaching go, has played an active role developing thethriving community of American go teachers.  “If you‘re on the list and wonder why you haven‘t heard anything in a while, that‘s because the list of addresses mysteriously disappeared a few months ago,” reports Roy Laird, who says “We are rebuilding the list and resuming the discussion.” To subscribe, send a message to with “goteach” in the subject line.

DID OZZIE AND HARRIET PLAY GO=3F This week‘s Pictureof the Week on is obviously dated, the question is where and when=3F Michael Yates of Washington State found this picture in a fascinating bound collection of papers from early American go at a local bookstore.  Be the first to identify the picture‘s source and win a $25 gift certificate from the vendor of your choice! Email your answers to us


CHO U TAKES LEAD IN MEIJIN: Cho U 9p defeated Yoda Norimoto Meijin by 4.5 points to win the fifth game of their Meijin title match in Japan. This victory gives Cho the lead at 3 to 2; with one more win he‘ll take the title. Yoda has held this title for four consecutive years, so he has an extra motivation for winning it again: five years in a row would earn himthe permanent title of Honorary Meijin, a distinction held by only two players, Cho Chikun 9p and Kobayashi Koichi 9p. Cho U and Yoda are also pairedagainst each other in the loser bracket of the current battle to be the challenger in the 43rd Judan Tournament.

LEE CHANGHO AIMS TO REPEATIN LG CUP: The finals of the 9th LG Cup in Korea, which is sponsored by an oil company and a newspaper, are between Lee Changho 9p, last year‘s winner,and Park Yeonghun 9p. This is a best of five match, and Lee has won the first game by resignation. You can download the game at

LEE CHANGHO WINS FIRST GAMEIN KBS CUP FINALS: Lee Changho 9p is also playing in the finals of the 23rdKBS Cup in Korea and has won the first game of that three-game match as well. In this case his opponent is Cho Hanseung 7p, who defeated Lee in the semi-finals of the winners’ bracket. Lee then beat Cho Hunhyun 9p in the semi-finals losers’ bracket to reach the overall finals. This is a fast-gametournament that is broadcast on Korean TV. The two finalists will also play in the Asian TV Cup against two Chinese and two Japanese players.

SEMI-FINALS OF WOMEN‘S STRONGEST COMING UP: The Women‘s Strongest Tournament in Japan involves 32 players in a knockout contest. The current tournament is down to four contestants: Shinkai Hiroko 5p, who defeated last year‘s winner, Suzuki Ayumi 1p, will play Mannami Kana, the current Women‘s Kisei. In the other semi-final match Okada Yumiko 6p will play Sakakibara Fumiko 6p, who is a member of the Kansai Kiin. The others are all members of the Nihon Kiin.

AGON CUPS CONTESTED: The Agon Cup Tournaments are fast-game matches held in both China and Japan, sponsored by a Japanese Buddhist Organization, Agon Shu. In Japan the winner this year is Hane Haoki9p, who defeated Kobayashi Koichi 9p by 3.5 points. Last year‘s winner was Kato Masao 9p, who lost to Yamashita Keigo 9p in the first round.. In China the final will be held October 30th between Shao Weigang 9p and ZhouHeyang 9p. Zhou defeated Gu Li 7p, the current title holder, in the second round. These are simple knock-out tournaments, and the final is a singlegame. There is a one game play-off between the Chinese and Japanese winners; last year Gu Li defeated Kato Masao.

MACFADYEN WINS BRITISH CHAMPIONSHIP: Matthew Macfadyen has defeated David Ward 3-1 to retain the British Go Championship. This is the 20th time that Macfadyen has been British Champion, an achievement the BGA Council has recognized by awarding him Honorary life membership of the Association. Commented game records and pictures can be found at

GO AS COMMUNICATION SPREADING: UK Go promoters Peter and Sheila Wendes have been invited by Yasuda sensei  and Yuki Shigeno to go to Japan in November to work with them on a ‘Go as Communication’ tour designed for young people with a variety of special needs. The Wendes will also introduce a group of Japanese students to the game in Kashiwa City, Tokyo and at Long IslandUniversity‘s Kyoto branch, and meet with Morino sensei of the Japan Association for Go for the Visually Impaired in Osaka to discuss the development ofthe work they have pioneered in Britain, which includes two schools workshops for blind pupils, and two adult beginners, who each have adapted sets andwho have just started their first game played by email.

GAME COMMENTARY: Timing and The Vital 2-1 Points
      Timing is a major issue at all levels of go, as today‘s game commentary by Yilun Yang shows. When is a local play necessary and urgent and when is it just slow=3F Find out in our third game from one of the participants in the 2005 Shodan Challenge (players publicly committed to trying to make shodan by the next Congress), the Shodan Challenge player is Matt Luce, who as a KGS 10 kyu plays Black against a 9 kyu..
      If you‘ve never fully considered the importance of the 2-1 point, you won‘t want to miss Kaz Furuyama‘s fascinating exploration of life and death on the first line in today‘s chapter of ”Important, Fundamental Matters.”
      To view the attached .sgf file(s), simply save the file(s) to your computer andthen open using an .sgf reader such as Many Faces of Go or SmartGo. Readers who need .sgf readers can get them for most platforms at Jan van der Steen‘s

GO REVIEW: The Way of Go
by Troy Anderson
Free Press, 248 pages. $23
Reviewed by Joel Turnipseed
       When I first heard that Troy Anderson‘s “The Way of Go” was coming out, I was thrilled. As a go player who had started and sold a software company in the difficult years following the dot-com bust, this promised to be a book written just for me. Unfortunately, Anderson has written a book for nobody, and that‘s just who should read it.
      This is a book whose business examples are so hackneyed that anyone who can program their DVR to save “The Apprentice” will be too sophisticated by half. And if you can calculate NPV on the handle of a hockey-stick diagram in a PPM, you will downright giggle. (Note to non-MBA go players: that last sentence is about how business readers will feel reading The Way of Go).
      A more important non-starter for business readers who are not go players is the book‘s appendix on “How toPlay Go.” If there‘s a more confusing, inelegant introduction to go, I haven‘t seen it. Considering how far we‘ve come in the fifteen years since Istruggled to learn go by scrounging Korean grocery stores for Ishi Press books, and how lucky we are to have outstanding new beginner‘s books by William Cobb and Peter Shotwell, it‘s sad that Anderson‘s book may poison a new generation of general interest readers with its confusing and turgid exposition. At one point, instead of explaining go‘s simple elegance simply and elegantly, Anderson quotes Durkheim‘s “Elementary Forms of the Religious Life,”in English, but referred to by its French title.
      Go players will not fare much better. Books like Ma Xiaochun‘s“The Thirty-six Stratagems Applied to Go” collect dust on my shelf for a good reason: the best way to appreciate the fundamentals of go is to, well, appreciate the fundamentals of go, not the obliquely-related heuristics or strategies of another endeavor. Admittedly, such analogic reasoning can open our minds up to great surprise and delight when done well. Unfortunately, this is tremendously difficult to do and Anderson‘s book is just half-baked.As he states in his acknowledgements, the book had a “massive, chaotic, andamorphous gestation.” I‘ve had games like that, but they‘ve never turned out very well.  
      In the end, I think Anderson‘s book is best seen as a cautionary tale (with an ironic recursive application). In trying to relate complex material from two different disciplines to experts in neither, Anderson‘s failure bears a striking resemblance to his description of the play of Greedy Sakata: “There is a bigdifference between a deliberate amashi strategy and a nonstrategy needing shinogi to survive because one gets into multiple bad positions.” For masters of chaos, real artists like Sakata, this can lead to some of life‘s greatextravagances. Unfortunately for Anderson (because I really would love for him to have succeeded), The Way of Go is an ungainly dragon with no hope for life.


FOR SALE: Quality go equipment including gobans/bowls/stones, ranging from entry level to elegant collectible items.   or email  (9/20)

- Cornel Burzo 6d is giving lessons on both IGS and KGS using voicechat for review every week dayfrom 8A to 5P using skype (check for details email  (10/18)
- Joey‘s Go School: Free lessons every Thursday night from 8-9P (EST)  on KGS! Joey Hung AGA 8d teaches online and in the San Francisco Bay Area. Find out more about Joey‘s Go School At510-659-8220, or  (10/4)
- Looking for a sensei to improve your Go skills=3F Yang, In Lin, 5-dan from Taiwan is available for online lessons. email for cost details. (9/20)
- IGS 5dan offers one FREE LESSON for those thinking about getting a teacher. For more information contact for more details or to schedule the lesson. (8/30)

AK: Juneau, Alaska ; (8/23)
AL: Birmingham or Hoover: email I‘m about 5k; any level is welcome. (9/6)
AZ: Phoenix, AGA 5d looking for go players; (8/23)
FL: Tampa Bay; Looking for players within 30 minutes of Tampa Bay to help create a club which might be located near USF.  (9/27)
IL: Northern Illinois, Gurnee area. Any rank, age, or shoe size welcome. Looking for friendly or teaching games. Contact (15 kyu) Joe at
MD: Baltimore, at the Maryland Institute College of Art. 7P Mondays, at
Cafe Doris (Mount Royal Ave) (10/18)
NEW! NY: Syracuse; The Central New York Go Club invites players who live anywhere near Utica, Geneva, Oswego, and  Cortland to join them on Monday nights. Visit theclub‘s website at:

go stuff to sell, swap or want to buy=3F Do it here and reach over 7,000 Go players worldwide every week at Go Classified! Listings are free and run 4 weeks; send to us at


October 30:  Arlington, VA
Pumpkin Classic
Allan Abramson 703-684-7676

October 31:  Ottawa, CANADA
Embassy of Japan Friendship Tournament
Charles Chang

October 30 & 31:  Portland, OR
Portland Go Tournament Fall 2004
Glenn Peters 503-753-4919

November 4-7:  Lancaster, PA
Lancaster Yang workshop
Chuck Robbins 717-898-7911 Ext. 22
Sam Zimmerman 717-892-1249

November7:  Seattle, WA
Monthly Ratings Tournament
Jon Boley 206-545-1424

November 7: College Park, MD
16th Mid-Atlantic Regional Go Championship
Steve Mount

This is a digest of events for the next month only; for a complete listing see the Tournament Calendar on the AGA website:

the EuropeanGo Calendar see

GET LISTED & BOOST TURN OUT! Got an upcoming event=3F Reach over 7,000 readers every week! List your Go event/news In the E Journal: email details to us at

Published by the American Go Association

Text material published in the AMERICAN GO E JOURNAL may be reproduced by any recipient: please credit the AGEJ as the source. PLEASE NOTE that commented game record files MAY NOT BE published, re-distributed, or made available on the web without the explicit written permission of the Editor of the E-Journal. Please direct inquiries to

Articles appearing in the E-Journal represent the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views of the American Go Association.
To make name or address corrections, notify us at the email address below. Story suggestions, event announcements, Letters to the Editor and other material are welcome, subject to editing for clarity and space, and should be directed to:
Editor: Chris Garlock