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 Post subject: dutchie's journal
Post #1 Posted: Mon Jan 02, 2017 9:14 pm 
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Let's write some stuff down and go on the record to try and make some actual progress. I think reasonable goals would be (KGS) SDK by June, 5k by end of the year (maybe? I finally got rid of my ? at 15k this evening). We'll see how this goes, as I'm not sure exactly how busy my schedule is going to be, but I think for I'll commit to two slow-ish (at least 10min) games on KGS a week, along with 5 tsumego a day (initially from the Cho encyclopedia). I'll do my best to review and post one of those up here as proof, and I'll be using Beeminder to self-motivate those tsumego.

In addition, I'll finish reading through the Janice Kim Learn to Play Go series (currently halfway through Vol III) and have another attempt at Kageyama (having previously read about a chapter and a half before it fell by the wayside). No timetable for these books, just going at my own pace until I'm done.

So does this seem reasonable? Any recommendations on my plan, for different or additional books or anything else at all?

Looking forward to getting stronger!

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Post #2 Posted: Tue Jan 03, 2017 8:32 am 
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Welcome!
I cannot really tell you if what you're planning is reasonable since I'm not stronger than you are, and I've only just begun studying (rather than just playing) go.
I'm sure others will advise you there. Still, I wish you good luck, and I hope to be able to contribute a comment or two to your journal.

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Post #3 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:28 pm 
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I have played the first of two games for this week! Here it is, with some comments by me:



This took me up to 14k, so I'm off to a good start already :D


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Post #4 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:42 pm 
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Your opening was pretty reasonable (especially for 15k!) and I'm not surprised that you won.

I don't know what your usual games look like, but if they usually look like this (both sides constructing gigantic moyos that the other side is afraid to invade) then I would suggest trying to play in a bit more of a "distributed" manner, e.g., :b19: at C6, and seeing what happens. You will learn a lot from the fighting that ensues. A lot of double-digit kyu games look like this and I think the earlier you start to leave it behind, the better.

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 Post subject: Re: dutchie's journal
Post #5 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:51 pm 
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Thanks for taking a look.

dfan wrote:
You will learn a lot from the fighting that ensues.


I don't feel that confident fighting at the moment, which is why I try to have mostly peaceful games. I suspect this approach is counter-productive, and I should try to play a more combative style to get more practice.

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Post #6 Posted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 3:12 pm 
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I played my second game of the week just now. It was an unranked 9-stone handicap vs a 5k. Here's the game, briefly reviewed by me! (I thought I removed all the game chat, but it seems I didn't. Oh well)



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Post #7 Posted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 9:08 pm 
Judan
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Hi dutchie,

Some ideas. :)

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Post #8 Posted: Mon Jan 09, 2017 4:02 am 
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Thanks for having a look, Ed. Nice of you to stop me from feeling too good about myself! At least some of those moves I was considering, but I think I'm still too averse to fighting.

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Post #9 Posted: Mon Jan 09, 2017 11:27 am 
Judan

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A couple of comments. :)



Edit: Somehow the variations are in the wrong places. Very strange. I'm working on it.

Edit: All OK now. The misplacement of variations occurred because of \:( in a comment. Then there were some lost moves because of \]: in some comments. Those were resolved by putting the move before the comment in the node. :)

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 Post subject: Re: dutchie's journal
Post #10 Posted: Thu Jan 12, 2017 4:40 pm 
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I played a couple of games tonight, both against a couple of chess players I know from over in that world. Neither of them had a rating yet, but I think my first opponent peaked at 9k many years ago. My second opponent, who I narrowly defeated despite my best efforts to kill all my stones (including a glorious 20 stone snapback), I think is more of a new player. Here's the loss to the former 9k:



Comments gratefully received as always.


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Post #11 Posted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 10:17 am 
Oza

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Some comments on the game:



The main takeaway is that you need to recognize urgent situations and not tenuki. To some degree, of course, this just comes with experience, but the whole game hinged on what happened in the lower right.


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 Post subject: Re: dutchie's journal
Post #12 Posted: Fri Jan 13, 2017 3:45 pm 
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Thanks for the review, skydyr. My thinking behind the tenuki at 39 was that I'd traded my two stones (P4) for two of white's (L2). I didn't appreciate until later in the game how important Q5 was to cut white, and to prevent those stones from being able to push into the centre.

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 Post subject: Re: dutchie's journal
Post #13 Posted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 6:38 am 
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I'm (sort of) stuck on this tsumego:



I was under the impression that only one move is supposed to be correct, but I can't find a way for White to live after any of the three moves played out there (A17, B19, E19). Could anyone give me some clues to what I'm missing? I think I may have just been staring at this for too long and there's something obvious.


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Post #14 Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 3:44 pm 
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Nice to see you start this journal. Best of luck in your Go studies! You're probably still a bit ahead of me, but its good to know someone embarking on this journey as well. I've also started the Learn to Play Go Series (almost done with book II) as you and am doing tsumego, in addition to still sharing time with chess and all the other life stuff.

Keep the journal up as you have at least one interested reader :D

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Post #15 Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 1:18 am 
Oza

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In the problem all 3 moves kill, though the hanes are better because they don't rely on bent four in the corner (and don't lose points if white later lives through an ignored ko threat). Also just a comment about your variations, you seem to like falling back and making an eye instead of trying to make a large eyespace, for example on the top variation move 4. The more natural way would be white plays 4 at a18, making as big as eyespace as possible, and then black plays b19 vital point to kill. This is both a better instinct for trying to build maximum eyespace, and is actually a better way to die because it leaves more aji, for example white b14 would be sente for a ko to connect and save the group, but with your move you are just dead without aji (plus by making black do the placement if you do get a 2nd eye later he gave you points).

Edit: not a ko, it's a clean connection by connect-and-die.


Last edited by Uberdude on Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:59 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Post #16 Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 3:16 am 
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I have been neglecting both this journal and playing games over the last couple of weeks, due to various annoying real life interferences like marking undergrad exams and dislocating my elbow. I should be able to get back to playing from tomorrow though!

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Post #17 Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:11 am 
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As promised, I played a game this week. One game on KGS on Wednesday and then a couple just now on Tygem. Unfortunately I had 3 losses, and they all felt a bit similar, with one misread leading to a whole bunch of my stones dying. I find it really hard not to let this completely demotivate me if every time I play one overlooked move after getting into a solid-ish position just lets me down. Is there anything in particular I should be doing to get over this? Just keep playing until I actually learn not to do stupid stuff? Any tips for staying motivated when it feels like I am just the worst?

Anyway, here's the KGS game with a few comments.



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Post #18 Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:33 am 
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Oh, something else I forgot to mention in the previous post: working through the Cho encyclopaedia is also pretty frustrating at times because it doesn't have any answers. I think it'd probably be better just to buy a proper tsumego book and use that instead. Any recommendations on that front? Or is that a topic too done to death and I should just look at all that's been said before?

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 Post subject: Re: dutchie's journal
Post #19 Posted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:25 pm 
Oza
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dutchie wrote:
Any recommendations on that front? Or is that a topic too done to death and I should just look at all that's been said before?


Graded Go Problems for Beginners is a good series for that. The title doesn't really explain that it's much more for than just beginners too.

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Post #20 Posted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 2:38 pm 
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I'm back again, after a little longer than I was hoping! I got super busy with real life stuff and haven't had much time for playing. I've kept up with correspondence games, finished one and one approaching being done. I also got through the first volume of Graded Go Problems (henceforth GGPB...). I made it some way through the second, and decided to restart it as I'm struggling with some of them. I think I need to be more disciplined about actually checking that my instinctual move actually works.

I just played and reviewed a game on OGS. I'd mostly only been using it for correspondence games before, but I had found that it was sometimes difficult to find a game on KGS or Tygem at my level, and it was pretty much instant there, so maybe I'll play more. Here's the game with my comments:



And here's the correspondence game I recently finished, which I haven't had a chance to review properly:



Hopefully I can get back on target for my goal of SDK by June!


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