Category: Journal

Weekly Progress Report: #05


As predicted, I really am in the thick of things this week. In the midst of all this work though, I’ve managed to barely cling on to my training regimen (though it was rather difficult to do as each day went on). I’m currently testing different things to make the training more consistent (i.e., getting it done first thing in the morning). I’ll let you know when I discover my own magical formula for it.

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Journal Entry: #06

I have to say that my training is really starting to be tested this week. I nearly messed up my streak a couple days ago after getting caught up in work and the rest of life. Thankfully I’m good for now, but it’s certainly becoming difficult as I’m adjusting to a higher pressure situation.

For anyone who used to play turn based go with me, I’ve added Online Go Server (OGS) back into circulation. Hopefully I’ll get around to adding Dragon Go Server in the future, but for now I’m just keeping track of KGS and OGS.

Other than that, I’ll just keep on working to keep my head above water as the tides rushes in. Hope that everyone else is doing well with their own training. Hope to see you on dry land soon!

Weekly Progress Report: #04


Whew. I’m hitting the one month milestone in my training and I’m proud to say that things are still going well. Granted, there are times where I almost skipped out on my regimen, but my past self was smart enough to keep it at a manageable level where the task was easy enough that it wasn’t onerous to complete.

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Journal Entry: #05

As I’ve started to ramp things up again, I am noticing that I’m entering that dangerous zone of treading the line between being productive or becoming so busy I eventually enter burnout. In order to temper that, I’ve been keeping better track of my time so that I don’t lose myself in my endeavors too much. It seems to be moderately successful so far, but I’ll need to keep close watch as the weeks progress.

Meanwhile, I’ve been happy to reintegrate reviewing games into my schedule. Though this might come to no surprise for most, it still astounds me much you can pick up by reviewing your own games (especially if you can maintain an objective view on the game). I’m still in the process of finding the right balance of commenting on them, but it’s one of those things that I just have to get a feel for over time.

And last but not least, I am happy to announce that I will be releasing a new book review soon: The Road Map to Shodan (Volume 2): The Basic Principles of the Opening and Middle Game. So be on the lookout for that as I make my return to reviewing go books and other products!

Go Congress 2014 - Conclusion

Prelude - I - II - III - IV - V - VI - VII - Conclusion

Simul Games

Here is a summary of all the professional simuls I played in at Go Congress:

  1. Day 1 - Dahye Lee, 4p
  2. Day 2 - Ho Yuu, 6p
  3. Day 2 - Jungsang Park, 9p
  4. Day 3 - Bo Ding, 5p
  5. Day 3 - Mariko Deguchi, 1p
  6. Day 3 - Yuhong Zhao, 5p
  7. Day 5 - Jennie Shen, 2p
  8. Day 5 - Shirley Lin, 1p
  9. Day 6 - Francis Meyers, 1p

My goal was to play the strongest professionals that I could while experiencing as many brutal defeats from as many styles as I possibly could. In addition, while I am happy with my collection of 9 simul games, I must admit that I was aiming to hit double digits. Haha.

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Weekly Progress Report: #03


Three weeks and counting! I am feeling like I am starting to make some real progress as I continue to adhere to my training regimen. Though I thought about upping my problem solving regimen, I think it’s at a good place where I am making decent progress while the task is relatively easy to accomplish. And as you’ll notice, I also added a playing regimen as well which is very easily supported via the GoQuest app I talked about in my journal entry earlier this week.

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Go Congress 2014 - Day 7

Prelude - I - II - III - IV - V - VI - VII - Conclusion

When I woke up, I realized that today was the last day of Congress. Man, where had all the time gone? It seemed like just yesterday I boarded the train with my brother to embark on an epic journey to New York.

The morning consisted of grabbing breakfast and checking out this cool place called The High Line that Anders recommended the night before. Luckily for us, it was still beautiful weather so we had a great time exploring the sights.

Around lunch, I got a call from Myung letting me know that Jung, Evan, Mark, and him wanted to try a steakhouse in NY before they left. So after meeting up with them at the hotel, we went off to look for one. We found one not too far: Wolfgang Steakhouse.

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Go Congress 2014 - Day 5

Prelude - I - II - III - IV - V - VI - VII - Conclusion

With the tournament officially off my mind, I have to admit it was kind of refreshing waking up without the worry of getting there at a specific time. I still got up a bit early though, as I wanted to run on over to sign up for simuls before the spots filled up. After all, since I wasn’t playing in the tournament anymore, I decided to set a new goal for myself: get as many simul games with professionals as possible!

After putting myself down for two games, my girlfriend and I went off to try a popular breakfast place: Clinton St. Baking Company. And while there was a decently long wait (considering it was a Thursday morning), it was definitely well worth it.

Blueberry pancakes with maple butter syrup... It was INCREDIBLE!

It was so good I had to put a second picture. Haha.

By the time I got back to Congress, the match had already finished and people were getting ready for the pro events (i.e., lectures, game reviews, simuls, etc.). I would be playing Jennie Shen 2p, who was Michael’s teacher.

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Journey Entry: #04

As I’ve been recounting my experience at Go Congress, I can only chuckle as I look at how different things are in comparison back to then. At the time, not only was I feeling overwhelmed by everything I was facing in life; but I was feeling a bit burnt out by go as well. Perhaps it was as simple as trying to do too much at once, but I believe that it was a result of having unrealistic expectations for myself.

What do I mean by that? Well, as all serious go players are aware, one of the major milestones in a go player’s journey is crossing the threshold of kyu to dan. And while it is true that I may have already crossed that threshold, part of me was always worried that I wasn’t as strong as other people thought I was. Or worse, maybe I was even weaker than even what I thought. As a result, you can see my that my KGS ranked has drifted down to 4k and has little to no ranked games. Because at the end of the day, it was easier for me to have a lower rank on KGS and know internally that I was stronger than the other way around (aka finding out I hit some ceiling in my rank).

I’m sure it sound weird and stupid to some of you, but that’s the truth of it all. Simple self-protection from what reality may hold. Haha. Of course, by doing so, I’ve created a ceiling that might just not exist. So now that I know it, I plan on playing more ranked games in the near future. But since it’ll take some time for me to build up to it, I’ve found a nice intermediary solution thanks to Satoru: GoQuest (Apple / Android ).

On the surface, it looks like your typical 9x9 app; but from what I heard, this app has gotten pretty popular in Japan recently. It has a mix of opponents (i.e., human and bots); but what really takes the cake, is that apparently some professionals even play on it as well. So while I have no way of confirming that rumor, I kind of like the idea that I may have a chance of getting demolished by a pro when I play. Haha. (Here’s my invitation code for those interested who want to try it out: n1ek8du)

And finally, I’m figuring out a way to integrate game commentaries back into my routine now. So if all goes well, be on the lookout for Monday Go Meditation to come back next Monday!