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Post #21 Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 1:27 pm 
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Hi Bill,

Example: calligraphy comes from Greek, kallos + graphein, meaning beautiful writing.

Curious: origin of ヨセ. :study:

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Post #22 Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:57 pm 
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EdLee wrote:
Hi Bill,

Example: calligraphy comes from Greek, kallos + graphein, meaning beautiful writing.

Curious: origin of ヨセ. :study:


I don't know the answer, and I want to study other things today instead of researching more about this (I've got a routine to stick to!), but a couple of things:
* I've seen Bill's kanji used before, but think I've also seen 侵分 - I didn't really want to get into it, and I most often see katakana, so that's why I didn't put kanji in my earlier comment
* Slightly off topic, but I found this comment about 結局 interesting:

Quote:
結局
「局」は、将棋や囲碁の盤をさし、試合は一局、二局……と数えます。
一局の流れのうち、終盤戦のことを囲碁ではヨセと言いますが、このヨセは、平安時代には「けち」と呼ばれていました。「結着」の「結」の意味です。
つまり、平安時代の囲碁用語が「結局」の語源なわけです。「けじめ」も、「けち」から派生した言葉だという説もあります。


(from https://info.honzuki.jp/post-12721/)

Maybe when English speakers use the word "yose", they mean something closer to kekkyoku

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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Post #23 Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:27 pm 
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John Fairbairn wrote:
Many people here regard yose as meaning the endgame. I have long tried to correct that misapprehension, pointing out that yose moves can occur in the opening. There has been a grudging acceptance among a few strong players that, yes, well, there are a few josekis where you can play yose moves, but most people are surprisingly resistant. Which is one reason I like to harp on about it :)

Why?

Not to be contrary, but I am not sure that it really matters. And also, I am not convinced that you are right - although I acknowledge your deeper knowledge of the subject. Or maybe I simply don't get it. Let me explain my thinking:

So we sometimes make yose moves in earlier stages of the game... so what? We make endgame-type moves in chess openings as well, this does not mean chess does not have endgames, or 'endgame' does not mean what we think it does.

The only reason to 'harp' on this, as you say, would be - imho - if the Japanese use the term 'yose' in a certain way, and we just use the same term differently. Not sure it does any harm, does it? We aren't actually going to speak Japanese, so its only a term, really. We might as well call it fluffy.

Also - personally - I always felt there is a deep cultural difference between the oriental thinking and western thinking - whatever those words mean. For a Japanese, yose might mean multiple things. A type of move, the stage of the game, and more - or anything in between. And in their minds it is ok to be that fuzzy, maybe. We might like things more precisely. So we use yose as denoting something very specific - the last stage of the game. Then we use terms like 'yose-move' to denote moves which are made earlier in the game but which aim and scope is akin to those usually made in the yose.

Cannot the same be said of the other stages of the game?

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Post #24 Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:53 am 
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jlt wrote:
If someone could give an accurate definition of fuseki, I would be interested.

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Good thing to know that I will finally get results by year 2049.


Haha! Banzo would be proud :).

Bantari wrote:

. . . We might like things more precisely. So we use yose as denoting something very specific - the last stage of the game. Then we use terms like 'yose-move' to denote moves which are made earlier in the game but which aim and scope is akin to those usually made in the yose. . .
[/quote]

That's interesting; I find easier (and more logical) to think of yose as a type of move and yose-stage as an informal reference to the endgame.

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Post #25 Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:58 am 
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Bantari wrote:

. . . Also - personally - I always felt there is a deep cultural difference between the oriental thinking and western thinking - whatever those words mean. For a Japanese, yose might mean multiple things. A type of move, the stage of the game, and more - or anything in between. And in their minds it is ok to be that fuzzy, maybe. We might like things more precisely. So we use yose as denoting something very specific - the last stage of the game. Then we use terms like 'yose-move' to denote moves which are made earlier in the game but which aim and scope is akin to those usually made in the yose.

Cannot the same be said of the other stages of the game?


Kung Fu is akin to hardwork and willpower, something you can have in anything from cooking to go. However, the English meaning of it that refers to what the Chinese call wushu has made it into the dictionary. But it might be confusing if every fourth fighting term had a different english meaning to the original :).

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Post #26 Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:31 pm 
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Bantari wrote:
John Fairbairn wrote:
Many people here regard yose as meaning the endgame. I have long tried to correct that misapprehension, pointing out that yose moves can occur in the opening. There has been a grudging acceptance among a few strong players that, yes, well, there are a few josekis where you can play yose moves, but most people are surprisingly resistant. Which is one reason I like to harp on about it :)

Why?

Not to be contrary, but I am not sure that it really matters. And also, I am not convinced that you are right - although I acknowledge your deeper knowledge of the subject. Or maybe I simply don't get it. Let me explain my thinking:

So we sometimes make yose moves in earlier stages of the game... so what? We make endgame-type moves in chess openings as well, this does not mean chess does not have endgames, or 'endgame' does not mean what we think it does.

The only reason to 'harp' on this, as you say, would be - imho - if the Japanese use the term 'yose' in a certain way, and we just use the same term differently. Not sure it does any harm, does it? We aren't actually going to speak Japanese, so its only a term, really. We might as well call it fluffy.


Indeed it doesn't matter what word we use as long as there is clear understanding about the concept it represents - "yose" or "fluffy" in your example.

What it does matter though is what the concept is, which is what John is talking about. I recently came across this article which is related to this topic - it is as simple as having different words for different colors/nuances influences the brain's perception of colors:
https://qz.com/1454466/your-language-in ... new-study/

In a country with a richer Go history/culture like Japan, it is quite likely that there are lots more nuances about various type of moves and various game concepts, and those are reflected in their language. While in the process of exporting Go to the Western world, lots of these nuances have been lost.

Personally I appreciate very much John's effort to make us understand more about the Japanese culture and history related to our beloved game - even if I don't always fully agree with some of his conclusions.

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Post #27 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:09 am 
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Bantari wrote:
The only reason to 'harp' on this, as you say, would be - imho - if the Japanese use the term 'yose' in a certain way, and we just use the same term differently. Not sure it does any harm, does it? We aren't actually going to speak Japanese, so it's only a term, really.


"Yose" is a technical term, and I think that to avoid misunderstandings, any technical term should have an exact equivalent in any language.

Examples of technical terms: monocotyledon, diffeomorphism, buckminsterfullerene, grand canonical ensemble.


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Post #28 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:21 am 
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sorin wrote:
Personally I appreciate very much John's effort to make us understand more about the Japanese culture and history related to our beloved game - even if I don't always fully agree with some of his conclusions.


John has an original voice with a deep insight into (Japanese) literature, the world of the professionals and the history of Go. We're fortunate to read his stories and thoughts on this forum. That should be repeated often.

If I summarize this thread I say: "boundary play (yose) typically occur near the late stage of the game (the endgame, which by definition starts when all groups are stable and boundary plays remain) but occasionally boundary plays happen earlier, when not all groups are stable yet". Or in other words "IF endgame THEN boundary play" but not "IF boundary play THEN endgame".

Likewise, the whole thickness/influence discussion to me boils down to "there is outward influence (=influence), and then there is outward influence with good (eye) shape or a base (=local thickness), and then there is a global cooperation of outward influence (=global thickness, Takemiya style), and then there's the accumulation of aji, which is some kind of tax on what may appear to be the score".

When I or others use go terms this way, using the Japanese word or the English translation, we often get: "no, there's much more to it". And I understand that every concrete instance of influence/thickness/... is different, but I haven't been able to enhance my conceptual understanding beyond above summary.

If there's more to it, I'd like to learn. Perhaps I've been too lazy to do so, by going through the reference material, and have been expecting something more succinct.


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Post #29 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:15 am 
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"Perhaps I've been too lazy to do so, by going through the reference material"

Indeed.

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Post #30 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:22 am 
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I remember when BigDoug banned me from KGS for explaining the difference between yose and endgame...

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Post #31 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 5:26 am 
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jlt wrote:
Bantari wrote:
The only reason to 'harp' on this, as you say, would be - imho - if the Japanese use the term 'yose' in a certain way, and we just use the same term differently. Not sure it does any harm, does it? We aren't actually going to speak Japanese, so it's only a term, really.


"Yose" is a technical term, and I think that to avoid misunderstandings, any technical term should have an exact equivalent in any language.

Examples of technical terms: monocotyledon, diffeomorphism, buckminsterfullerene, grand canonical ensemble.


The thing is, most go terms have been around long enough to have acquired informal, non-technical meanings, as well. Some terms, such as sente and gote, are mostly used informally. Others, such as eye, are not easy to define technically.

The Western adoption of yose to mean the endgame is no accident. The Japanese use yose informally as a synonym for the endgame. (Kenkyusha defines yose as the last moves in a go or shogi game. That is technically incorrect, but reflects informal usage.) John is right, OC, that you can play yose earlier than the endgame. But the term for endgame (終盤) is used much less in the Japanese literature than yose (ヨセ). A search on Amazon Japan for 終盤 turned up a handful of books, even one on the middle game, while a search for ヨセ turned up over 100 books.

In his Yose Dictionary (ヨセ辞典) Kano starts by addressing the question of how interesting yose is. His first paragraph starts out, "Fuseki is interesting." The next paragraph starts out, "The middle game is more interesting." The third paragraph starts out, "Yose is when the fighting is over." Informally Kano is using fuseki, middle game, and yose to indicate three stages of play, rather than 序盤、中盤、終盤. He also uses terms more technically, as required.

The informal usage of yose has been adopted into English. John makes an important contribution with the term, boundary play. There is no reason the two cannot coexist. :)

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Post #32 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 7:44 am 
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It can be an uphill struggle to get a discussion going here and so I often tend to be provocative. But usually there is a serious underlying intent. Those who wish to be VERY serious about yose may care to look at my article on kechi (the forerunner of yose) in The Go Companion. There I note how even the famous translators have made a mess of the go passages in Tale of Genji and other Heian classics. Their misunderstanding of kechi is one such case.

But continuing in serious mode here for a change, I will make some other observations about go terms in general.

As I have already mentioned, I am close to completing a book on the games between Genjo and Chitoku. There are almost 90. As usual I have collected a vast number of pro commentaries and synthesised the results. But on this occasion I have gone one step further. I have added an appendix, which I call "Go Wisdom." Here I discuss a very large number of go terms, quite a few of which will be new to an English-speaking audience. I do not so much define them (I am already bumping up against the maximum page limit) as discuss them (e.g. list how and in what contexts they are used) and I also list proverbs associated with them. The idea is that as the readers read through the games, if thoughts occur to them about certain references in the commentaries (e.g. to momentum) or about moves in the game that are not even covered by the commentary, they can turn to this appendix and be supplied with a set of memory joggers or suggestions for further thoughts. I combine this with a new format for the commentaries themselves in the hope that it will stimulate self-study and also embrace all levels of go strength.

As a refinement to the appendix I have added an eclectic set of cross references to each term in the commentaries. The idea here is that instead of an individual game you can study a concept by referring to the wealth of examples in many games. You may find, say, definitions of thickness hard to understand but once you've looked at over 120 examples, plus explanations of their significance in the commentaries, your neural network rather than short-term memory will take over - and we all know how powerful that is in go!

Some spin-off results of this exercise were interesting to me.

I have long noticed that the way westerners talk about the game is rather different from the way it appears in Japanese books. I even ran a thread called (I think) the Big Game on rec.games.go which explored this phenomenon.

There are two aspects to this. One covers written texts (I.e. translations). For example, the Japanese seem to make use of many more terms. This is probably largely to do with the effects of generations of translators which have all used different English terms for the single Japanese term. This dilutes the term so much that it can make it look as if there is no concept there at all (e.g. choshi, ijime). But there are also cases where the Japanese simple does have inherently more nuances, which are lost either by using the raw Japanese term in English (e.g. yose, aji) or by using Emglish terms that carry their own range of very different nuances (e.g. influence, trade, forcing moves).

The other aspect relates to speech or other informal discussion. Here the obvious difference is that the Japanese texts are provided by pros. English original texts are mostly provided by amateurs. We should expect a stark difference, and one way in which this shows is that the pros make much more use of certain terms than amateurs do.

For example, the two most common terms in G-J, i.e. by pros, were thickness and forcing moves. (Just in passing, sente kikashi as opposed to just kikashi is - or was - a term beloved of British amateurs but does mot occur even once here; they also use sente much more, instead of forcing moves).

Another very common term was "settling", which was as common as tesuji. I suspect the proportion in amateur usage would be more like 1:100 rather than 1:1.

A further high scorer was "order of moves." I suspect this scores highly because of the pro obsession with efficiency of moves, and I'm sure that is also an explanation of the very high score forcing moves (timing = efficiency).

Erasing/reduction scores high, which seems interesting in the light of AI games.

A couple of other examples, less frequent but perhaps eye-opening for amateurs: heavy" - as early as move 9; kamae (construction) where amateurs might say moyo. But there was no example of jimoyo, which seems to be used only of modern games.

A further noticeable pro-am difference is nuances. I referred earlier to nexus go theory. That is my own term. When I was working on shogi computers (our British team led by David Levy produced the first programme to beat a pro, on four pieces), I developed a nexus shogi theory and in the course of visiting Japanese researchers in Tsukuba, I learned about a somewhat similar approach to go by a Japanese academic. The main difference was that his groups of concepts had to have a clear hierarchy. That proved too difficult to program, I gather. It was easier to handle a nexus in shogi because at an early point depth of search and material gain made up for hierarchical imprecisions.

Pros seem to think in nexus terms. They may not realise that, of course! So where we talk of running battles, or at most leaning attacks and twisting attacks, the pros talk about aori, seriai, karami, motare, semedori, torikake, etc. Or forcing moves, momentum, ersure, probe. Or aji, semeaji, aya, fukumi, te ga aru. Or settling, bases, kamae. The difference is not just that between a vintage claret suffused with overtones and a bottle of plonk. It is also that a term within one nexus can also apply within a different nexus, and so you can get a nexus of nexuses, each informing the other. Like a good red wine enhancing the taste of the beef. This rich network of associations (rather than the actual terms) surely leads to greater range of vision and creativity.

Does this richness of terminology help produce stronger amateurs? Does a lack of richness handicap us? I suspect it does make a big difference of amateur level, and of course even pros have to start at amateur level. But maybe, leaving strength aside, the biggest difference is to amateurs' understanding enjoyment of the game as fans. Think petrolheads vs F! racers.

Of course I can only speak in impressions, though they do cover over 50 years of reading about go. But this little index has hardened up my main impression: terms matter, but not necessarily as ways to get stronger - unless we are also willing to spend the vast amount of time needed to form neural networks of the associations they represent.


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Post #33 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:40 am 
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On topic, I also feel that Western players have a need to define everything very clearly and to be very analytical. The Japanese are generally more holistic.
But in the end, the game remains the same. These terms are just terms, just ways for us to get confused or get lost in translation. Of course they can be important, but let's never forget that language will always come up short. Go is no exception. It's easier to let the game speak for itself.
But I understand that wouldn't be very practical :lol:

John Fairbairn wrote:
It can be an uphill struggle to get a discussion going here and so I often tend to be provocative. But usually there is a serious underlying intent. Those who wish to be VERY serious about yose may care to look at my article on kechi (the forerunner of yose) in The Go Companion. There I note how even the famous translators have made a mess of the go passages in Tale of Genji and other Heian classics. Their misunderstanding of kechi is one such case.


I have. It was one of the highlights of the book for me. (Probably the parts about Shuei, Sansa and Bao Yun are my favorite)
The difference in several translations is - in fact - striking.

John Fairbairn wrote:
But continuing in serious mode here for a change, I will make some other observations about go terms in general.

As I have already mentioned, I am close to completing a book on the games between Genjo and Chitoku. There are almost 90. As usual I have collected a vast number of pro commentaries and synthesised the results. But on this occasion I have gone one step further. I have added an appendix, which I call "Go Wisdom." Here I discuss a very large number of go terms, quite a few of which will be new to an English-speaking audience. I do not so much define them (I am already bumping up against the maximum page limit) as discuss them (e.g. list how and in what contexts they are used) and I also list proverbs associated with them. The idea is that as the readers read through the games, if thoughts occur to them about certain references in the commentaries (e.g. to momentum) or about moves in the game that are not even covered by the commentary, they can turn to this appendix and be supplied with a set of memory joggers or suggestions for further thoughts. I combine this with a new format for the commentaries themselves in the hope that it will stimulate self-study and also embrace all levels of go strength.

As a refinement to the appendix I have added an eclectic set of cross references to each term in the commentaries. The idea here is that instead of an individual game you can study a concept by referring to the wealth of examples in many games. You may find, say, definitions of thickness hard to understand but once you've looked at over 120 examples, plus explanations of their significance in the commentaries, your neural network rather than short-term memory will take over - and we all know how powerful that is in go!


I hope the Go shop in Amsterdam (Het Paard) will take that new book in its catalogue, it sounds very interesting.

Little off-topic but I can't seem to PM you: I'm reading your book on Honinbo Shuei right now. The book itself does not have his game records (for obvious reasons), instead they can be found at GoGoD.
However, I'm pretty old-fashioned and only go through game records on paper. Do you know if there are any books on Shuei's games?
Alternatively, signing up for GoGoD, is there an alternative to PayPal?

Thanks!

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Post #34 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:19 am 
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John, your conclusions are helpful. They would be thrice as helpful if you translated all Japanese terms but maybe you keep your secrets for the book? Hopefully, it will be a printed book instead of remaining a proprietary file format secret, as would be an only-Kindle or only-iOS file format.

It is not richness of Japanese terms that could have helped me but among the thousands of useless to not so useful terms there are a handful of very useful ones. Not knowing them impedes progress. Knowing them but not knowing their original meaning well enough, too. The best term can be useless if all information is lost in translation or missing explanation. When you say that you will not define every term in your book, there is the great danger of repeating history. You might misjudge relevance of a term and a reader might also miss its relevance due to the still missing English explanation.

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Post #35 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:02 am 
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For what it's worth, over the past five years I have invested much more in table tennis than Go. Being studious, I watched a lot of youtube videos on technique and improvement. One particular Vietnamese (online) coach makes a big fuzz about the "Chinese philosophy (of learning how to play table tennis)", explaining they train in a fundamentally different way than the Europeans/Westerners, using concepts unknown or underestimated by the latter, and this gives them the edge. These observations and teachings tend to irritate many (Western) viewers, who argue that table tennis is simply way more popular in China, making for a larger pool to fish in, and that China has turned table tennis into a matter of national pride. The concepts revealed suggest a big difference, but when you digest them, they don't seem to make all that much of a difference. The major difference is that (Chinese) pros pay a lot of attention to detail and strive for technical perfection. I put (Chinese) between brackets because I'd say it's a difference between pros and amateurs, not between Chinese pros and European pros. The question whether "Chinese philosophy" is a real differentiator, or a mystification, reminds me of the discussions we're having here.

To give a few examples, the "Chinese philosophy" includes attention for detail such as
1) footwork, being in continuous motion, balancing on the palm of your feet
2) power from the ground, meaning you should use the whole body, starting with the legs, rotating about the waist, in order to generate power (and spin)
3) tiny adjustments, meaning after each stroke you should relax the grip and make small adjustments for the stroke to come

When articulated this way, you get similar reaction like "yeah, but there's more to it". Sure there is, in the way you apply these technical aspects, and I'm sure a (Chinese) pro will have physical sensations that refine the idea of "tiny adjustments" into dozens of mental concepts, just like the Inuit have a 1000 words for snow. But this "extra" is of little use to the amateur, even aspiring ones, because they can get 99% of their potential improvement from paying attention to footwork, waist rotation and grip relaxation.


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Post #36 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:36 am 
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Kirby wrote:
I've seen Bill's kanji used before, but think I've also seen 侵分 - I didn't really want to get into it, and I most often see katakana, so that's why I didn't put kanji in my earlier comment


Hayashi Gembi uses 侵分 in his Gokyoseimyo, vol. 2. Using katakana he explains it as making an invasion inside territory (ji no naka e uchikomu).

Quote:
Slightly off topic, but I found this comment about 結局 interesting:

Quote:
結局
「局」は、将棋や囲碁の盤をさし、試合は一局、二局……と数えます。
一局の流れのうち、終盤戦のことを囲碁ではヨセと言いますが、このヨセは、平安時代には「けち」と呼ばれていました。「結着」の「結」の意味です。
つまり、平安時代の囲碁用語が「結局」の語源なわけです。「けじめ」も、「けち」から派生した言葉だという説もあります。


(from https://info.honzuki.jp/post-12721/)


He also uses 結局 and explains it as solidifying (katame).

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Post #37 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:41 am 
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Knotwilg wrote:
the Inuit have a 1000 words for snow.


Arabic saying wrote:
God has 1000 names, and only the camel knows them all.

:)

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 Post subject: Re: Yose = endgame? No way, Jose!
Post #38 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:16 pm 
Honinbo

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John Fairbairn wrote:
Does this richness of terminology help produce stronger amateurs?


Go has always struck me as a particularly literary game. All games have their jargon, OC, but go has many verbal concepts. OC, they ultimately must be translatable into positions and plays, but their verbal descriptions help us to organize, understand, and utilize them. When I became shodan I supposed that there were about 50 verbal concepts which, when understood, would make a player a shodan. (These days I am not so sure. {sigh}) I recognized that some concepts, such as thick, thin, light, and heavy, were so difficult that a complete understanding was impossible, and often there were questions of degree which made understanding difficult, as well. Still, striving to understand the verbal concepts of go was well worth it. :)

These days I think that the superhuman AI bots will challenge us to develop new high level, verbal concepts, and to modify or discard our current concepts.

Quote:
Does a lack of richness handicap us?


These days, as far as the level of play is concerned, not much, I think. People can get stronger simply by playing stronger opponents, who are now abundantly available, either online or with bots. Also, with so much commentary available, people can naturally pick up the terms they need to follow along. At a very high level, you need to talk the same language as your coaches and colleagues, but you can cross such hurdles when you come to them. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Yose = endgame? No way, Jose!
Post #39 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:20 pm 
Oza

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Quote:
Hayashi Gembi uses 侵分 in his Gokyoseimyo, vol. 2. Using katakana he explains it as making an invasion inside territory (ji no naka e uchikomu).


Yes, and you will recall that Hayashi Genbi was a plagiariser from Chinese sources. His father in law was a bona fide Chinese scholar and seems to have found a way to get Chinese texts for him.

The point there is that one of the most famous texts would have been Guo Bailing's Guanzi Pu. Although this is sometimes regarded as a standard life & death collection, many of the problems are in fact what I call encroachment problems - a specific subset of boundary plays. (And guanzi was/is a Chinese term for the yose, of course). Genbi appears to have latched on to this type of problem as a novelty.

The inherent meaning of the characters in 侵分 indicates that encroachment is indeed the intended meaning but somehow or other it came to be used for yose in general (and usually read as yose, but the scholarly reading is shinfun). The origin is Chinese according to Morohashi but I don't recall having been able to find a Chinese example.

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 Post subject: Re: Yose = endgame? No way, Jose!
Post #40 Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:47 pm 
Honinbo

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John Fairbairn wrote:
The inherent meaning of the characters in 侵分 indicates that encroachment is indeed the intended meaning but somehow or other it came to be used for yose in general (and usually read as yose, but the scholarly reading is shinfun). The origin is Chinese according to Morohashi but I don't recall having been able to find a Chinese example.


As luck would have it, here is a source for modern Chinese usage. https://www.zhihu.com/question/53826401 :)

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