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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #21 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 9:20 am 
Oza

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Please change the title of the thread to: "What are the fundamental naming conventions used in British and American education systems."


Seems useful to have the occasional oblique reminder that care is needed in choosing or using words (or that one nation shouldn't assume all other nations are the same). This forum is plagued by debates over the meaning of things like intuition, thickness, aji, moyo, or the difference between basics and fundamentals. I vaguely recall a thread that wobbled a bit because not everyone agreed on what was meant by 'competent' or 'shodan'...

But, with tongue firmly in cheek, revenons à nos moutons: there is only one fundamental in go - liberties.

Liberties define territory and life and death, or capture - but also influence and thickness. Every time you place a stone on the board you hope it will be useful and efficient. At the end of the game look at the board and see how many of stones died or occupied friendly intersections, or in short were not completely efficient. Understand why and you will have mastered the fundamental principle.

The second stage in go is to learn to cope with an interfering opponent while applying the fundamental principle. Understand that and you will be a competent shodan (whatever that means).

The final stage is to understand yourself.


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Post #22 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 9:25 am 
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Gotraskhalana, if you read carefully, you must notice that I have not used basics as another word for fundamentals. Yes, I have left 'basics' undefined; see your favourite dictionary for its meaning.

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Post #23 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 9:48 am 
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Uberdude wrote:
Apologies for the derailing daal, though I think this talk of grammar schools is about as useful as the never-ending circular discussion of fundamentals threads that people seem to like here which never use a go diagram.


As I have said before, if it is basic, it has a diagram (or more than one diagram). :)

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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #24 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 10:24 am 
Judan

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To make up for the grammar school talk, here is something I consider part of "the fundamentals" with some diagrams (not that I much of a fan of the phrase):

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X . O . . . .
$$ . . . . a . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]

In this shape with black to play he can more-or-less connect at a:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X 3 O 6 . . .
$$ . . . 2 1 4 X . .
$$ . . . . 5 7 . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


Strictly speaking white can cut by sacrificing 2 stones, but black's usually able to fight ok after this as white lost a lot to do so:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$Wm6
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . 3 . . . .
$$ . . X X O 2 . . .
$$ . 7 . O X O X . .
$$ . . . 5 X 1 4 . .
$$ . . . . . 6 . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


White can try to cut like so, but a/b are now miai so black is connected. However with nearby support (e.g. at c) this could be effective for white.
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . a . . . .
$$ . . X 3 O . . . .
$$ c . b 2 1 5 X . .
$$ . . . . 4 . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


If it's white turn she can prevent the connection like this, but its kinda slow:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X , O . . . .
$$ . . . . 1 . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


This is another way:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X , O . . . .
$$ . . . . . . X . .
$$ . . . . 1 . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


This is another way that moves out to the centre and also aims at pressing at a. A little reading is required to see how it ends up in a good place to stop black from capturing the 2 stones in the 3rd diagram.
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . 1 . . .
$$ . . X , O . . a .
$$ . . . . . . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


But if black continues like so then the presence of a stone at 4 (but not extension at b instead) means he again threatens to connect at a. (White may or may not prevent that threat).
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . 3 . .
$$ . . . . . 1 2 b .
$$ . . X , O . 4 . .
$$ . . . . a . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


But this jump doesn't stop the connection:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . 1 . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X , O . . . .
$$ . . . . . . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]


These shape patterns being second nature is part of what I would call having a mastery of the fundamentals.


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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #25 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 11:57 am 
Oza

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These shape patterns being second nature is part of what I would call having a mastery of the fundamentals.


I wouldn't dispute in the slightest that instilling such patterns as second nature is useful or that they are common. They are so common, in fact, that I suspect people who ask about the fundamentals know about (and perhaps even know) them already.

But my sense of what they are really asking is how do you know when to choose between the various options: which White 1 in the above case.

I also have a sense that the problem is something of a western one in that too many people here try to reduce shapes (or other facets of the game) to some sort of essence as an exercise in mathematical elegance. Good shape becomes a static concept when it should be dynamic; people want help on what shapes do (and don't do), not what they are.

In fact, though, if that's what people think they want help on, they are still wrong. It is still starting from the mistaken stance that good shape is the starting point. The starting point should be 'need', the job to be done. Even beginners are quite good at being aware that they have problems. For example, they realise they need to connect their stones better. Like all of us at one stage or another, they see their stones struggling to connect or even being cut off, and they want to know how to end this misery. Learning to choose the best way to connect, or do whatever job is needed, according to circumstance is the most useful lesson here. The correct choice will automatically be good shape, but that's just incidental. That's why an empty triangle can be good shape.

It is very rare to see a list of diagrams showing good (i.e. pretty) shape in oriental books. Even if a book has katachi in the title it will be coupled with something else (e.g. katachi and suji, or static and dynamic [=haengma]). But it is very, very, very common to see reams and reams of examples on, say, how to connect. I have a Japanese book somewhere on my desk at the moment - submerged under others so I'm not sure which one - which talks about connecting. It does not list any of the ways of connecting but does illustrate by examples that, even with similar looking positions you must choose the connection according to whether you want to live or want to create thickness. In other words the good shape there is driven by need or the job to be done.

You don't buy a chain-saw and then look round for something to do with it - unless it's Halloween and you want to star in a Hollywood B movie. You decide what job you want to do and decide what tools you need. If you want to cut some paper, you buy a pair of scissors not a chain-saw. One go equivalent of the chain-saw might be, say, the horse's neck shape. You probably know the shape - but what's it for? Making a list of what it might conceivably do is little real help - we just end up with the "tool for getting stones out of horse's hooves" syndrome.

So what we need to offer beginners (as one definition of fundamentals) is a list of the most common and urgent jobs they have to do in every game of go. Connecting is one such job. Cutting is another. Extending is another. The list can easily be extended, but is not very long, and acquiring the right way of thinking for one aspect will help every other aspect.

The best example of job over shape I remember, as a eureka moment, from my early days is this one (White to play and live):



Very many beginners play A (as I did, the first time), because they are told to play good shape, which is usually taken to imply pretty shape.

But if you understand your job is to connect efficiently, and to choose the right tool for the job, you are more likely not to fall into that trap.


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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #26 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 12:41 pm 
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John F. says "liberties" are the true fundamentals and I agree but there are two more

1. The purpose of the game which is to have more alive Stones on the board than the opponent, which leads to two fundamentals 1) alive = stability/life/thicknesS and 2)more = Development = influence/territory
2. The rule of capture which inreed leads to the concept of liberties, 1) remove them = threaten, 2) connect & increase them = defend

Minue talks about all this in the article I referenced above.

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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #27 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:04 pm 
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Hi,
For me, the fundamentals of go are the following.

Rules
Area counting, territory counting

Life and death
Two eyes
Vital points, Nakade
False eyes
Seki

Fighting
Ladder
Net
Double atari
Atari on the 2nd line
Snapback
Pin
Capturing races

Shapes
Extend, Kosumi, Jump, Knight move, Large knight move, Elephant's step etc
Attach, Hane, clamp, warikomi etc
Crosscut, Bamboo joint, turtle back, tiger mouth, dog's head, connection on the first line etc

Tesuji
Races
Cut / Connect
Shortage of liberties
Sacrifice
Magic in the corner

Opening
Corner first, edges next
Enclosures
Approaches
Extensions
Lines
Basic Jôseki
Classic openings

Opening strategy
Make a base / attack weak groups
Play in the bigger space
Stay away from strength
Make stones work together
Balance territory and influence

Endgame
Closing frontiers
Sente, gote
Value of moves
Neutral points, teire points

Positional Judgement
Strategy if late, strategy if in advance, strategy if balanced

Invasion
Sabaki

Reduction

Moyo

Ko fighting

Use of aji

Attack
Make profit while attacking
Use of thickness

Various
Avoid sente for the sake of sente
Efficiency, tewari
Sacrifice useless stones


Last edited by Pio2001 on Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post #28 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:12 pm 
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John Fairbairn wrote:
The best example of job over shape I remember, as a eureka moment, from my early days is this one (White to play and live):



Very many beginners play A (as I did, the first time), because they are told to play good shape, which is usually taken to imply pretty shape.

But if you understand your job is to connect efficiently, and to choose the right tool for the job, you are more likely not to fall into that trap.

Dear John,

Probably playing at A has nothing to do with "good" or "pretty" shape. (As a matter of course, you will know that there are exceptions to every "rule".)

A beginner will be happy to have done the job, as White's group is alive after this move, but in principle only.

Later -- especially for the application in real games -- they will realise that it will be better to live in three moves than in five moves, giving less ko threats to their opponent.

The same is true the other way round (Black to play and kill). Killing in five moves will also work, but is sub-optimal. Killing in three moves is better.

+ + + + + + + + + + +

I am convinced that it will benefit the problem solvers to provide them with as many (slightly) different problems as possible, and let them "find" their OWN "rules", combined with their OWN "exceptions".

Go is too complex for a collection of "First do A, second do B" statements.
But it will be possible to provide hints "where to look" and "what to look for".

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Post #29 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:16 pm 
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Very many beginners play a (as I did, the first time), because they are told to play good shape, which is usually taken to imply pretty shape.
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W W to play
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . X X X . . . .
$$ . . X X O O O X X . .
$$ . . X O . O . O X . .
$$ . . X O . a . O X . .
$$ ---------------------[/go]
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W 2 ko threats, 1 in each fuzzy zone
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . X X X . . . .
$$ . . X X O O O X X . .
$$ . . X O ? O ? O X . .
$$ . . X O ? 1 ? O X . .
$$ ---------------------[/go]
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W Only 1 ko threat in fuzzy area
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . X X X . . . .
$$ . . X X O O O X X . .
$$ . . X O . O ? O X . .
$$ . . X O 1 ? ? O X . .
$$ --------------------[/go]


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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #30 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:43 pm 
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Why do we have to define the set of things that are considered fundamental? To me, learning fundamentals is about establishing a good foundation. When you have gaps in your knowledge, no matter how "basic" the topic is, fill them. That's why I responded the way I did earlier in the thread - somewhat as a joke, but also seriously.

If you want to learn the fundamentals, study the gaps you have in your own understanding. Does it matter if you enumerate what this means for each individual?

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Post #31 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:08 pm 
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Kirby wrote:
Why do we have to define the set of things that are considered fundamental?
Good question. Could be a pedagogical thing -- one wonders about the similarities and contrasts between Eastern v. Western traditions (the Greeks?) in this regard.

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Post #32 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:39 pm 
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EdLee wrote:
Kirby wrote:
Why do we have to define the set of things that are considered fundamental?
Good question. Could be a pedagogical thing -- one wonders about the similarities and contrasts between Eastern v. Western traditions (the Greeks?) in this regard.


I also thought about this east vs west thing earlier in the thread but did not post about it. I was wondering if this discussion would even take place in the east.

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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #33 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:47 pm 
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John Fairbairn wrote:
Quote:
These shape patterns being second nature is part of what I would call having a mastery of the fundamentals.


I wouldn't dispute in the slightest that instilling such patterns as second nature is useful or that they are common. They are so common, in fact, that I suspect people who ask about the fundamentals know about (and perhaps even know) them already.
But my sense of what they are really asking is how do you know when to choose between the various options: which White 1 in the above case.


In my attempt to apply the idea of the trivium to the study of go, I think that the question of which option to choose, at least on the level of what people are calling fundamental, would fall under the classification of dialectic. Basic patterns would fall under grammar.

Quote:
I also have a sense that the problem is something of a western one in that too many people here try to reduce shapes (or other facets of the game) to some sort of essence as an exercise in mathematical elegance. Good shape becomes a static concept when it should be dynamic; people want help on what shapes do (and don't do), not what they are.


I am not sure who you are talking about. If anyone is associated with mathematical go, I am. But I raised cain on Sensei's Library about the treatment of shape as static. (See http://senseis.xmp.net/?DynamicNatureOfShape ). As you say, shape is dynamic. :D

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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #34 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:51 pm 
Oza
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Kirby wrote:
Why do we have to define the set of things that are considered fundamental? To me, learning fundamentals is about establishing a good foundation. When you have gaps in your knowledge, no matter how "basic" the topic is, fill them. That's why I responded the way I did earlier in the thread - somewhat as a joke, but also seriously.

If you want to learn the fundamentals, study the gaps you have in your own understanding. Does it matter if you enumerate what this means for each individual?


Gaps is an interesting way of putting it. One can imagine go fundamentals as a net, the gaps through which the lost games slip.

Presumably, there are different nets; the kyu nets being woven more loosely than the dan nets.

Also, the possibility exists that the net, however closely woven, may be torn in some places and in need of repair.

You are right that it might be a waste of time to look at individual damaged nets, but on the other hand, it would be nice to know for example what a good 3k or 3d net looks like.

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Post #35 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:52 pm 
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EdLee wrote:
Kirby wrote:
Why do we have to define the set of things that are considered fundamental?
Good question. Could be a pedagogical thing -- one wonders about the similarities and contrasts between Eastern v. Western traditions (the Greeks?) in this regard.


I dunno. Certainly there are a whole lot of Japanese go books with kihon in them, but I don't know of many English go books with basic or fundamental in them. OC, I could be wrong about the English go books. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: What are the fundamentals?
Post #36 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:06 pm 
Judan

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John Fairbairn wrote:
Quote:
These shape patterns being second nature is part of what I would call having a mastery of the fundamentals.


I wouldn't dispute in the slightest that instilling such patterns as second nature is useful or that they are common. They are so common, in fact, that I suspect people who ask about the fundamentals know about (and perhaps even know) them already.


I wouldn't assume it is so well known among mid-sdk, I have found quite a broad spectrum of knowledge among players of the same strength. Perhaps sparky, daal, Fedya, dfan and others can say how much of my post was old hat to them? It depends a lot on how they learnt: did they read books, sensei's library, have a teacher and what did their teacher teach, hack about online etc? I have come across dan players who didn't know what an L group was: and I don't just mean didn't know the term; they didn't recognise the shape as a commonly-occurring one that was worth remembering it was a dead shape but treated it as just another life and death problem to read from scratch every time.

To take another one of these common shapes/sequences, the sente 2nd line hane-connect from a 3-3 invasion of a 4-4 with an approach stone:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ | . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . A A . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . X . . . .
$$ | . . 1 2 6 O . .
$$ | . . 5 3 4 . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . .
$$ +----------------[/go]

There was a recent post from Fedya (6k) in which he expressed surprise about this technique (it would have been better than what he played in order to increase his eyespace more in sente, I seem to recall he essentially just played 3 at 5): it wasn't a standard part of his Go vocabulary. These kind of common shapes, the different options available and when to use them are one of the most useful teaching topics I think for mid sdks. I actually did a lecture on this exact topic which was recorded here: https://youtu.be/csIMlfMzA_k.


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Post #37 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:22 pm 
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Quote:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X . O . . . .
$$ . . . . a . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]

Doesn't Attack and Defense say that it's better to play at a than where White has played?

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Post #38 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:24 pm 
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Uberdude wrote:
John Fairbairn wrote:
Quote:
These shape patterns being second nature is part of what I would call having a mastery of the fundamentals.


I wouldn't dispute in the slightest that instilling such patterns as second nature is useful or that they are common. They are so common, in fact, that I suspect people who ask about the fundamentals know about (and perhaps even know) them already.

I wouldn't assume it is so well known among mid-sdk, I have found quite a broad spectrum of knowledge among players of the same strength. Perhaps sparky, daal, Fedya, dfan and others can say how much of my post was old hat to them?


Know about: 90%

Know: 10%

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Post #39 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:34 pm 
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DrStraw wrote:
but did not post about it.
Yes, lots of land mines. :-?

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Post #40 Posted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 3:38 pm 
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Fedya wrote:
Quote:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . X . O . . . .
$$ c . . . a . X . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ . . . . . . . . .
$$ -----------------[/go]

Doesn't Attack and Defense say that it's better to play at a than where White has played?

Yes, if white was the last one to play in this position, then the 4th line "invasion" is rather unusual and the 3rd line is often better if you want to invade (however, see http://ps.waltheri.net/database/game/74056/). I think Attack and Defense does point out though that this 4th line invasion can be a powerful splitting move with support nearby (like that c). But who said white played last? Maybe it was like this:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ . . . . . . . . . |
$$ . . . . . . . . . |
$$ . . . . 2 , 1 . . |
$$ . . 3 . . . . . . |
$$ . . . . . . . . . |
$$ . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ------------------+[/go]

Or this:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . O . . . . . . . . . . . . . X . . |
$$ | . . . , . . . . . 1 . 4 . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . O . . . 2 . . . . . . . X . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ +---------------------------------------+[/go]

Or this:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . 7 , . . . . . , . .
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . 5 . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . 1 , . 4 . 3 . , . .
$$ | . . . . 2 . . . . 8 . .
$$ | . . 6 . . . . . . . . .
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . .
$$ +------------------------[/go]

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