Tuesday 30 March 2010

I have a dream.

I'm going to play one game before I go to sleep. I came here to mention a blog post I wrote on my other blog where I try to tackle the motivational aspects of my life. I have a feeling that if I do not eventually do something to doing nothing I might end up, well, doing nothing for the rest of my life.

Sunday 28 March 2010

My first self-review.

This is bad, hopefully it's not a total failure. It looks as though I've just gone through different scenarios where both of the players are equally bad, and ended up a lot like many of my games with lower or similar ranks than myself. But I think I managed to learn something from this, although I don't yet really know what it is. It's a funny thing when you sort of get it, but yet don't, although maybe some sub-conscious element is still working overtime to crack the answers.

Friday 26 March 2010

A Game of Go

A while ago when I was going through Freebase where I'm occationally doing some edits in, I came across with this reference. It is about a TV series from the 90's called Jag (Judge Advocate General), and particularly an episode of the said series. It's the 10th episode of the second season called "A Game of Go".

Monday 22 March 2010

Idea: Self-reviewing according to visitors' comments

I thought it'd be a cool idea to pick one of my older games (well, I asked on KGS and people pointed out the older games might be a bit too bad and I most likely don't remember it anymore, so I should perhaps choose a fairly recent one), post it online with eidogo and ask you guys for ideas and comments on how I could've played better, and afterwards post a self-review (again with eidogo) according to the comments I've got on the game. If I get really courageous I might (!) even do it as a video review, but I don't promise anything. How's that sound?

To experiment with this idea, here's one of my latest games. It was actually played today.

Early yose. (Learning to Lose part 2)

Lately many of my games have more or less started with an early yose. I've heard that beginners do that more often than more advanced players. I would add, that especially those who have no confidence in their play tend to also resort to an early yose, whether they are beginners like me (struggling in the 20 to 18 kyu range) or those with somewhat higher ranking like 10th or 9th kyu.

Saturday 20 March 2010

My first kifu. (SGF)

Here's AmbyR00's first game in KGS, mind you, it's not the first I've ever played, but not very much better. I was white. ;)

AmbyR00 W vs. nobody33 B (Black wins w/ Resignation)

RU[Japanese]SZ[19]KM[6.50]TM[1500]OT[5x30 byo-yomi]
PW[AmbyR00]PB[nobody33]DT[2009-05-23]PC[The KGS Go Server at http://www.gokgs.com/]RE[B+Resign]

If this comes out right, then I've read these instructions correctly. Thank you Boywing.

Today I unfortunately don't have more time to write. I'm almost sleeping while I sit here writing this. So that's for now, and I hope I can play you all very soon. ^^ /gg

Wednesday 17 March 2010

The King and his advisor are overlooking the battle field

A couple days ago I was greeted by my mobile phone (more specifically the fortune app) with this funny little story, I decided to share it here because it reminded me of Go:

King: "How goes the battle plan?"
Advisor: "See those little black specks running to the right?"
K: "Yes."
A: "Those are their guys. And all those little red specks running to the left are our guys. Then when they collide we wait till the dust clears."
K: "And?"
A: "If there are more red specks left than black specks, we win."
K: "But what about the ^#!!$% battle plan?"
A: "So far, it seems to be going according to specks."

Learning to Lose

The hardest thing about Go, for me anyway, is inevitably the part of losing a game. Well losing once is not bad, losing twice is not bad either. But when you play 10 games and each and every one ends up in an epic failure the pressure of losing, the overwhelming feeling of shame is almost unbearable and pretty hard to contain. This is not very common in the other games I've played.

For example the game of patience. You can lose many times in succession, but it doesn't rise such an emotional response. In Black Jack you lose money, but that's almost all there is, you can still cough up the cash and still feel pretty good about yourself. But of course these games have a lot to do with plain luck, unlike as in Go it is most likely to do with your own inabilities. The one you are frustrated about is yourself being not able to see the next move, not able to predict the outcome, not able to plan ahead. (BTW. A weird thing is, I don't feel the same disappointment playing and losing in computer action games. Something to do with being able to play the same game or level again over and over again I guess.)

So what could we Go newbies, beginners alike do to combat those feelings of failure?

The friendly people on KGS have told me time and time again that it will come with practice, eventually. And I should not worry. I figure they were right. And I would like add, and this is what I've learned from aikido, is whenever you feel you did badly, that is the moment when you have learned something new, although realizing exactly what it is might take some time. And if you ever come to a phase where everything ends up in frustration, don't feel bad to take a little break. Maybe day or two to clear the mind and then try again.

If you can, you should also try some physical exercise, maybe go out for a run, or swimming, biking, or walking. If not, maybe you can do some weight lifting, sit-ups or push ups. Make the most of it, keep in shape and have fun. See ya soon! ^^ /gg

Saturday 13 March 2010

Reddit Go Club

About a week ago there was a thread about Go on Reddit where a question of creating a Reddit Go club came up, soon to be followed by an article on r/baduk asking the very same thing. So, a few of us started to frequent a room 'reddit' on KGS. The room was promptly made official and was moved to the Social rooms by a friendly gold star admin. So there we have it, reddit's own virtual go club. Next on agenda is creating some events or activities we could hold in our room to make our club even more interesting.

Anyway it's interesting as I've learned I'm the least experienced go player on r/baduk, ranking just 22k on KGS. But hopefully I'll be learning as I go on. If you want a game, feel free to ask anytime you see me on either KGS or IGS. See ya. ^^ gg!

Friday 12 March 2010

Tadaa! My first post!

Hello! I'm a guy from Lahti, Finland, a father of a small boy, Leo, and pretty much into everything that goes on in the Internet, mostly Free Culture related stuff. My hobbies have also included Aikido and Chi Kung, although lately I haven't been financially able to pursue them.

I decided to start blogging about one of my favourite subjects; Go. Also known as weiqi in Chinese or baduk in Korean. I first came to know Go in business school, most likely in 2003, not very sure about that, really. It was a classmate who introduced me to the anime Hikaru no Go, Hikaru's Go.

So I tried to play on and off for a couple of months, tried Pandanet/IGS, KGS... Didn't really know what I was doing then. It wasn't until I found a 9x9 Go board on Yahoo when I really started learning the stuff.

I was soon learning more on KGS and was even dreaming of setting up my own Go salon or a Go themed café. In Aikido I had a lot of friends who were interested, and even supportive of my idea. So I even took a entrepreneurship course where I drafted a detailed plan on how I would set everything up, from getting funding to pricing, location, counting how many tables I needed, to plans for setting up terminals for Internet Go. Everything was accounted for and ready for implementation. And then my girl friend told me she wanted us to leave Lahti and move to another city (with an ultimatum). So we left for Jyväskylä. The year, I think was 2005.

The move affected my plans gravely enough all by itself, but losing the familiar milieu and friends due the move my dreams were abruptly shattered. There was no way I could have started the same business in the new place. I didn't even have to investigate it. Even building up relationships was awkward in that town not to mention trying to build publicity for a project that was most likely to fail in a place where there is a café in almost every corner. Even my hobbies were affected. I tried both of the Aikido dojos there, and sure enough I didn't feel at home in either. The other one (the one I would've probably liked) was just too expensive, and the other, well their style didn't suit me and they were really unsympathetic towards training bokken and jo. "Sticks are just sticks" was the comment if I remember it correctly.

Anyway, after that I forgot Go for years to come. In the spring of 2006 our son was born, I had a project around a web page so I didn't have much time for almost anything but work. At home. When the baby was crying and shouting all the time. It was a hard time for me, not to say the web project turned out not to be a success after all. We did get married though. In the summer of 2007.

Well, fast forward a move to Kotka in fall 2007, and another move back to Lahti in 2008. I started going to Aikido as soon as we got back here, and in May of 2009 I created new accounts on KGS and IGS as AmbyR00. I'm back on track playing Go, although being ill for almost the whole last quarter of last year also shows in my game activity for that time. Today I'm trying to catch up, slowly where I left off in 2005, maybe enough to start thinking of my dream again. Although, looking at it now, it might surely have been just a dream.

I'll be posting my progress reports and other Go related stuff here, so that I'd have another reason to keep on playing Go. ^^ See ya soon! gg!