Encountering My First Chess Advocate

Today at work I was talk­ing to my co-worker and was scoffed at when he found out I played go.

Who plays go?!” he exclaimed.

I tried to then jump into a mini-speech on its com­plex­ity; but he shut me down pretty quickly by dis­miss­ing me and say­ing that chess was much more com­plex and the only rea­son why go is as “mys­te­ri­ous” as it seems to be is because it essen­tially hasn’t had the same expo­sure here in the West­ern world. And given enough time, it would be clear that chess was clearly the harder game.

To be hon­est, I was rather baf­fled and shocked. I had encoun­tered my fair share of chess vs go argu­ments, but this was the first time I’d encoun­tered it in per­son (and with such vigor as well). Sadly I was too shaken by the encounter to really try and con­vince him oth­er­wise. (To give some con­text, he is very intel­li­gent and is extremely knowl­edge­able about a lot of things. So in other words, I wasn’t going to win him over with any sort of uplift­ing speech about go.)

As I sit here think­ing about it, I do want to write about my per­sonal take on the chess vs go debate and why I chose go; but that is for another time. For now, what I will say is that I think that try­ing to argue that one is supe­rior over another is like say­ing one is bet­ter off learn­ing one instru­ment over another. You can spend all day argu­ing over minu­tiae of how one instru­ment might give bet­ter coor­di­na­tion than another; but what really mat­ters at the end of the day is as sim­ple as which one gives you real joy. And if you have that, that is enough to make one thing bet­ter for you than another.

Just my two cents.

Monday Go Meditation: Game 71

Intro­duc­tion

For this week’s med­i­ta­tion, we are going to start off nice and easy with a 9x9 game I played on GoQuest a week or so ago. It’s not too crazy in regards to fight­ing, but is a great exam­ple of how pow­er­ful influ­ence can be on such a small board. Hope that you enjoy the game and the commentary!

Con­tinue read­ing

Hello Again with GoKibitz

Hey every­one. Just wanted to let you know I’m still alive and well. Been get­ting into some really inter­est­ing projects these past few weeks and have been really pon­der­ing what I can do with blog­ging again since I miss doing it. And as some­one who hates it when a reg­u­lar blog­ger just drops out of the blo­gos­phere, you can rest assured that I won’t ever just leave the blog hang­ing in the event I need to close up shop for awhile.

In terms of what I’ve been up to, I’ve been tin­ker­ing again with daily reg­i­mens and play­ing games via DGS and OGS while con­cur­rently jug­gling a new job and try­ing to learn a ton of new skills. I’ve gone all the way back down to the very basics of doing only 10 life and death prob­lems a day. They’re not hard in any sense of the word, but they help me to keep a con­nec­tion to the world of go.

And as a spe­cial treat for those who miss my reviews, I’ve decided to try review­ing one of my 9x9 games that I played recently on GoQuest via an awe­some new social kifu review­ing soft­ware called GoK­ib­itz that a close friend and long time rival built him­self. So I hope you enjoy the review and I will try and post again soon!

UPDATE: Appar­ently all my com­ments got lost in the abyss of the inter­net.… Oy vey… I’ll try and get another ver­sion up soon.…

Happy Chinese New Year 2015!

cny2015

First and fore­most, my apolo­gies for dis­ap­pear­ing out of the blue like that. Though it would not have been my pref­er­ence, a num­ber of things came up that forced me to put go on the back burner for a lit­tle bit. On the upside though, I will be start­ing a new job in a cou­ple of weeks and plan to start get­ting back to go.

Hope every­one is doing well.

Happy Chi­nese New Year!

Giving DGS Another Shot

I’ve decided to give Dragon Go Server another shot. While I had some issues with it in the past, I’m ready to approach it again from a more calm approach. In other words, I won’t be in a rush to make my move or fin­ish games. Instead, I’ll view each move as a prob­lem for me to solve. No more, no less. So go ahead and send your chal­lenges. I await them in anticipation!

Weekly Status Report: #12

Overview

With 2015 upon us, I wanted to start off right by kick­ing off the sta­tus reports again since they are a great way for me to keep myself account­able to what’s been hap­pen­ing. As you’ll notice, the train­ing reg­i­men has returned to its sim­plest form. This is pri­mar­ily due to the desire to stay the course with­out any waver­ing. So while this report is a lit­tle bare, I’m cer­tainly hop­ing to grow it in time. Hope you all had a great New Years!

Daily Train­ing Regimen

  • Do 2 pages of Jump Level Up series.

Books

  • Jump Level Up 3 by Baduktopia
  • Handicap-Go Strat­egy and the San­ren­sei Open­ing by by Rob van Zei­jst and Richard Bozulich

Games

  • KGS — 0 games
  • OGS —  1 ongo­ing game

A Retrospective on 2014

Hey every­one. Sorry that I’ve been MIA for a while. As you might have guessed, I’ve been caught up with work along with the many oblig­a­tions that come with the hol­i­day sea­son. Lots of late nights, run­ning errands, cook­ing, clean­ing, etc.

While I haven’t been able to blog as much as I would like, I couldn’t bear the thought of end­ing 2014 with­out some sort of retrospective.

In terms of how the year has gone, it has been a rather intro­spec­tive one that was fraught with a lot of anx­i­eties and inse­cu­ri­ties that plagued me sub­con­sciously. Though it’s rather unfor­tu­nate that it took me so long to iden­tify the issue at hand, it has been an impor­tant dis­cov­ery that has allowed me to start fix­ing a lot of dif­fer­ent aspects in my life. So once again, I have another thing to add on to the list of rea­sons I’m thank­ful that go is in my life.

And while the stan­dard prac­tice is to make big over­tures about what the next year will bring, I think I’ll take a page from mod­esty this time around. No grand ges­tures of blog­ging every­day or play­ing 100 games in a month. Instead, I’ll just let you know what I have in mind for next year:

  1. Actu­ally play games and not just study.
  2. Find a groove that works for my blog­ging. I know what I want ide­ally, but it’s time I found the right bal­ance for consistency.

With that said and done, I also want to take the time to thank every­one for their sup­port of the blog. Your com­ments and words of advice and encour­age­ment have been key in help­ing me per­sist through times of dif­fi­culty. I hope that you all have a great New Years Eve and will have an even bet­ter 2015. Till next year!

Weekly Progress Report: #11

Overview

Hey every­one. Sorry for not updat­ing the weekly sta­tus report for the last two weeks. I’ve been doing a bit of intro­spec­tion and came to the real­iza­tion that every­thing had started to become a bit too mun­dane for my lik­ing. I know that this runs slightly counter to my whole notion of “con­sis­tency,” but I feel like there comes a point when it becomes robotic (which is the last thing I want for this blog).

So as you’ve prob­a­bly noticed, the offi­cial “Jour­nal Entries” series was killed off since I felt like it was some­what a rep­e­ti­tion of this weekly sta­tus report. In addi­tion, because I hadn’t been invest­ing as much time in go as I would like, it felt like I was say­ing the same thing over and over again.

Well for­get all that. I’m going back to the basics and my roots as a blog­ger. Can’t quite artic­u­late what that exactly entails, but I can tell you for sure that I am feel­ing a change in the wind. It’s going to be an excit­ing ride!

Daily Train­ing Regimen

  • Work on Jump Level Up series.

Books

  • Jump Level Up 3 by Baduktopia
  • Handicap-Go Strat­egy and the San­ren­sei Open­ing by by Rob van Zei­jst and Richard Bozulich
  • The 21st Cen­tury Dic­tio­nary of Basic Joseki: Vol­ume One by Takao Shinji, 9-dan

Games

  • KGS — 1 game
  • OGS —  3 ongo­ing games

Stirring the Embers Once Again…

2014-12-10 Go Seigen

As many of you are aware, the leg­endary Go Seigen passed away on Novem­ber 30th. I’ve been wrack­ing my brain for a way to prop­erly honor him, but it is still elud­ing me. To help the process out, I decided that it would be a good start work­ing through my col­lec­tion of his games again. As I played through his game (above), I started to feel the embers begin to catch flame again.

I also had the oppor­tu­nity to play with fel­low blog­ger Ris­ingStar today. It was a friendly game with a 9 stone hand­i­cap. And while the mere thought of play­ing that kind of game would have scared me a week ago, it was sur­pris­ingly calm­ing and fun. Some­times I feel like I get in these moves where the game just seems to make sense. Moves flow eas­ily and there is a seren­ity that keeps you level headed at all times. This was one of those games.

The game record is below, but there will most likely be a MGM on it in the future.

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