Mississippi Go Society
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Offering Mississippi's strategically minded game players a deeper alternative to chess!


Contents

1. What is Go?
2. Mississippi Go Society
3. When Do We Meet?
4. Free Go Lessons
5. Free Intro Course
6. How to Join
7. Club History
8. Club News
9. Go Equipment & Books
10. Resources
11. Tournaments
12. Club Ladder

Build your Child's IQ with Go

Mississippi Youth Go Club
(Ages 6-11)

Thursdays 6:30 - 7:30 pm




New Go Quote Daily:


What is Go?

Go is a fascinating game which has captivated young and old alike for over 4,000 years.

Go is an ancient oriental board game of strategy and tactics which surpasses Chess in depth of skill and level of complexity. In spite of this, its rules are simple enough for even a young child to learn in a couple of minutes.

While much deeper than chess, Go offers a unique handicap system which allows beginners to play on a completely equal level with advanced players and even with Go masters. Because of this, persons of all ages and abilities can enjoy playing Go with each other.

THE PARADOX OF GO

The game of Go is a paradox. It is both the essence of simplicity and the ultimate in complexity all at the same time.

1. The most simplistic elements
(black and white stones and a wooden board with a 19 x 19 grid painted on it),

2. The most simplistic moves
(place a stone anywhere and leave it there),

3. The most simplistic rules
(surround a stone and you capture it. Surround the most territory and you win.),

4. And yet it is the most astoundingly complex and strategically challenging game ever invented!

GO vs. CHESS

Rules of Play:

In Chess the rules of play are complex with different piece moves and many special rules such as capturing en passant and castling.

In Go the rules of play are elegant with only two simply rules governing all play.

Depth of Complexity:

In chess there are only twenty choices for an opening move and twenty choices for a reply, resulting in 400 different possible opening scenarios, 64 of which are considered strong.

However, in Go there are 361 choices for an opening move and 360 choices for a reply, resulting in an astounding 129,960 different possible opening scenarios, 992
of which are considered strong.


And this is just the first two moves of the game. It is a mathematical fact that the number of atoms in the universe is smaller than the number of possible variations IN THE FIRST 32 MOVES of a 19x19 Go game.


Assuming 4e78 as an upper bound for the number of atoms in the universe and using the formula 361x360x359x? ... x(362-n) (for n moves) PERM(361,32) = 1.6e81 possible variations in the first 32 moves.

For more thoughts on this see:

http://senseis.xmp.net/?NumberOfPossibleOutcomesOfAGame

Statistically the unlimited possibilities and tactical options stagger the mind and require deep strategic planning. It doesn't take long for an honest and sincere chess player to realize that this game is much deeper than Chess.

In this age where computer programmers are able to invent programs like Deep Blue and Deep Thought which can beat the highest ranked Chess Masters of our time, they are still unable to invent a program which can beat even a young child who has only been playing Go for a few months.

Brain Functions Used In Playing:

In Chess the emphasis in on local battle with very slight, if any, emphasis given to global strategy. According to most Chess Masters, chess is between 96% and 99% tactical. Thus Chess is almost entirely analytical, which means it primarily uses and develops the left brain.

Go on the other hand (or should I say "other side of the brain") emphasizes global strategy more than local battle. In spite of this Go does still utilize local battle to a high degree.

Go players utilize deep strategic planning which is then implemented through incisive tactics. This requires and develops both the sequential and analytical abilities of the left brain while simultaneously requiring and developing the intuitive, synthesizing, and artistic/pattern recognition abilities of the right brain.

Thus Go fully utilizes and integrates the functions of both halves of the brain making it the perfect MindSport.

Joint research, performed by the Hospital of Anhui Medical University in China, the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota, and the Center for Magnetic Resonance Research at the University of Minnesota, has confirmed and documented the different areas of brain activity utilized while playing Chess and Go: "To investigate the neural basis of GO, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to measure brain activities of subjects engaged in playing GO. Enhanced activations were observed in many cortical areas, such as dorsal prefrontal, parietal, occipital, posterior temporal, and primary somatosensory and motor areas. Quantitative analysis indicated stronger activation in the right parietal area than in the left. This type of right hemisphere lateralization differed from the left hemisphere lateralization observed during chess playing."

http://users.eniinternet.com/bradleym/Compare.html

Handicap System:

There is no formal handicap system in chess because giving away pieces distorts both tactics and strategy and does not truly compensate for differences in playing strength. This makes it impossible for players of widely different ability to enjoy a truly competitive game.

Go however, has a natural handicap system which very precisely compensates for playing strength differences while remaining completely consistent with normal play. This allows players of widely different ability to enjoy truly competitive games.

Tactics vs Strategy:

Chess is primarily tactical having only a modest strategic component. "Chess is 99% tactics." - Grandmaster Richard Teichmann, (1868-1925)

Go is profoundly strategic, but with incisive, complex, integral tactics.

Draws:

In Chess the draw is an option and Chess Grandmasters often end their games in an agreed upon draw to save face. However, in Go there are no draws, one person always wins, even if it is only by 1/2 of a point.

Go surpassing Chess as The Game for The Intelligentsia:

In an article about chess, entitled "Queen, Captured by Mouse" which was published in the New York Times Metro Section on February 6, 2003, chessmaster and former World Correspondence Chess Champion, Dr. Hans Berliner said:
"You don't have to be really good anymore to get good results. Chess is winding down.....What's happening with Chess is that it's gradually losing its place as the par excellence of intellectual activity. Smart people in search of a challenging board game might try a game called Go..."

In the interest of brevity, our comparison here has barely touched the tip of the iceberg. For a more in depth look into the differences between Chess and Go, and a good bit of other intelligent insights into the game of Go, we highly recommend Milton N. Bradley's website.

http://users.eniinternet.com/bradleym/index.html

You can find an interesting article he wrote and a detailed chart with a side by side comparison of Chess and Go using 31 primary criteria here:

http://users.eniinternet.com/bradleym/Compare.html

THE BENEFITS OF PLAYING GO

Go is well suited for and enjoyed by children, youth and adults of all ages. The mental, emotional, social, and medical benefits of playing Go have all been well documented.

Go playing is enormously beneficial in the mental, emotional, and social development of children, especially in the areas of developing real life reasoning and judgment skills.

New medical research suggests that the brain workout one gets from playing strategic board games such as Go on a regular basis can greatly reduce the risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer's.

According to William Cobb, "In recent years, Dr. Kaneko Mitsuo, a Japanese neurosurgeon with an international reputation, has been working with older people suffering from senile dementia. Using PET scans he has shown that there is substantial area of the right brain that begins to atrophy in people who suffer from dementia. This turns out to be essentially the same part of the brain that is most active when engaging in musical activities and in playing Go. To research this further, Dr. Kaneko has been teaching Go to patients in the beginning stages of dementia. (He) is now convinced that learning to play Go can reverse the development of dementia in virtually all patients in the beginning stages of the disease.

For persons wishing to develop both halves of their brain and prevent senility, Go gives the perfect mental workout, and it's a lot of fun at the same time.

Here are a few informative websites which expound more upon some of the benefits derived from playing Go:

Four Benefits derived from Playing Go

Brain Workout Benefits

Go is the Pleasurable Way to develop a Superior Mind


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Tournaments

2008 State Go Championships

See Club News in right panel for details


 


AGA EVENTS:

 


MISSISSIPPI GO SOCIETY
SUPPORTING PATRONS

Go Seigen Patrons ($100+ Donation):

Rez Johnson

McLeod Johnson

Grand Master Patrons ($80 Donation):

Grand Patrons ($60 Donation):

Master Patrons ($40 Donation):

Supporting Patrons ($20 Donation):


 

 

Mississippi Go Society


The Mississippi Go Society is Mississippi's first Go club. It was founded by Rez Johnson to offer Jackson's strategically minded game players an alternative to chess.

It's members meet weekly in Jackson, Ridgeland, and Brandon to play the fascinating game of Go. The Mississippi Go Society is an official chapter of the American Go Association.

The public is always welcome to drop in any time for an introduction, a lesson, or to play several games of Go with us, without having to join the club. All we ask is that when you arrive you purchase food and/or drink to support the restaurant, coffee shop, or book store that sponsors our meetings.

Feel free to contact us at: info@MSGo.org


The Mississippi Go Society is proud to be an official chapter of the American Go Association.


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How to Join the MS Go Society
Guests are always welcome to drop by for an introduction, a lesson, or to play Go with us. However, if after a few visits you decide you want to keep playing with us we ask that you join the MS Go Society.

General Membership in the Mississippi Go Society is alway FREE!

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Club History

The Mississippi Go Society is Mississippi?s first Go club. It was founded by Rez Johnson to offer Jackson?s strategically minded game players an alternative to chess.

The roots of the club go back to 1992 when avid chess players, Jim Newkirk, Stephen Hinton, and Rez Johnson, all fellow members of the Jackson Fencing Club, began meeting every Wednesday night at the old Shun Lee's Chinese restaurant in Ridgeland to play chess. One night instead of playing our usually game of chess, Jim and Steve introduced Rez to the ancient game of Go.

Rez was immediately smitten by the paradox before him, a game with the most simplistic elements, the most simplistic moves, the most simplistic rules, and yet it was the most astoundingly complex and strategically challenging game he had ever seen. Statistically the unlimited possibilities and tactical options staggered his mind.

For Rez, Go was a fascinating conundrum that was just too good not to explore. Rez soon came to love the game and began teaching Go to anyone and everyone who showed the slightest interest. Rez subsequently founded the Mississippi Go Society for the purpose of promoting the game of Go throughout Mississippi and particualrly in the Jackson metropolitan area.



Club News

Mississippi
2008
State Go Championships
November 27 and December 6, 2008


On November 27th, 2008 the Mississippi Go Society hosted the Youth Division and the Junior Division of the Mississippi 2008 State Go Championships. Mississippi’s finest Go players age 6 through 11 competed in the Youth Division and Mississippi’s finest Go players age 12 through 17 competed in the Youth Division.

We are proud to announce that all of the first through third place finishers in the Youth Division are members of the Mississippi Youth Go Club which is a club sponsored and run by the Mississippi Go Society. We are equally proud to announce that all of the first through third place finishers in the Junior Division are members of the Mississippi Go Society.

Congratulations to Mississippi Go Society Members McLeod Johnson the 2008 Junior State Go Champion and to Caleb Lewis the 2008 Youth State Go Champion.

On December 6, 2008 the Mississippi Go Society hosted the Open Division of the Mississippi 2008 State Go Championships. Mississippi’s finest Go players age 12 and up competed in the Open Division for a chance to win the title of Mississippi 2008 State Go Champion.

The Open Division was primarily designed to give adult Go players in Mississippi a chance to compete for the State Go Champion title. However, in the interest of determining the very best Go player in the state the minimum age limit has been lowered to12 to accommodate Junior Go players as well.

We are proud to announce that all of the first through third place finishers in the Open Division are members of the Mississippi Go Society.

Congratulations to Mississippi Go Society Member Rez Johnson the 2008 State Go Champion of Mississippi.

State Open Go Championship: Rez Johnson - First Place, McLeod Johnson - Second Place, Robert Pridgen - Third Place

State Junior Go Championship: Rez Johnson - Tournament Director, McLeod Johnson - First Place, Nathanael Lewis - Second Place, Joseph Lewis - Third Place

State Youth Go Championship: Caleb Lewis - First Place, Sara Beth Alderman - Second Place, Jacob Lewis - Third Place, Rez Johnson - Tournament Director


2008 State Go Champion


Rez Johnson
2008 State Go Champion



2008 Junior State Go Champion


McLeod Johnson
2008 Junior State Go Champion

 

2008 Youth State Go Champion



Caleb Lewis
2008 Youth State Go Champion


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When Do We Meet

WEEKLY:

GO PLAYING FOR ALL AGES:

We meet every Thursday night from 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. for group instruction, one-on-one lessons and Go playing. All ages are welcomed: (Adults, Youth and Children) and Kids receive preferential instruction from 6:30 - 7:30 pm.

Guest are always welcomed to play, observe, or received free instruction. All we ask is that when you arrive you purchase food and/or drink to support the restaurant, coffee shop, or book store that sponsors our meetings. If you plan to drop by please send us an e-mail so we will know to look for you.


OUR LOCATIONS:

We alternate between two locations each week:

THE FIRST AND THIRD THURSDAY OF THE MONTH:
Newk’s Cafe Express Restaurant
120 Stribling Lane
Brandon, MS
Phone: 601-709-3133
(Just off Crossgates Blvd. near Highway 80)
Directions Here

THE SECOND AND FOURTH THURSDAYS OF THE MONTH:

Jumbo Chinese Restaurant
1913 Spillway Road
Brandon, MS 39047-6021
601-919-8482
(In the Reservoir Community on the Rankin County side of the Reservoir.)
Directions Here



ON THOSE RARE FIFTH THURSDAYS OF THE MONTH:

Soul Shine Pizza
1139 Old Fannin Rd
Brandon, MS
601-919-2000
(In the Reservoir Community on the Rankin County side of the Reservoir.)
Directions Here


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Free Go Lessons

Every Thursday Night 6:30 - 7:30 pm at the above locations.

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Buying Go Equipment

A good basic set, including board, stones and bowls can be purchased for under $60, or you can spend thousands of dollars for a top-quality kaya floor board with legs, and stones made of slate and clamshell.

According to the AGA it is very important that you get the right equipment in order to make the game enjoyable.

"The "right" equipment means a board with a pleasant neutral background, and round, lens-shaped stones that are properly proportioned, neither too large nor too small for the board. Unfortunately most equipment manufactured in the United States, by commercial game manufacturers, does not meet this standard."

"Much better, comparably priced equipment is available from American vendors of equipment manufactured either in Asia or in accordance with Asian standards.

Go Equipment Vendors:

There are only a handful of American vendors of Asian manufactured Go equipment and we have purchased from each of them over the years. However, for the last five years the Mississippi Go Society has purchased all of its boards, stones, bowls, books, and magnetic demonstration boards from Samarkand.

Our club members prefer Samarkand because we have found their products to be superior to products we have purchased elsewhere. They offer great prices on quality Asian made equipment and provide everything a Go player and club could want. They have a very professional looking and easy to navigate website through which you may purchase everything they sell. Their employees have always been courteous and helpful and they offer prompt shipping. We highly recommend Samarkand!

By the way, Samarkand is owned by Janice Kim, professional 3rd Dan and author of the popular Learn to Play Go series, which we also highly recommend.

Check out Samarkand's website here:
Samarkand

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Go Resources

MISSISSIPPI GO RESOURCES:

AGA GO RESOURCES:

American Go Association

The benefits of Playing Go

AGA Weekly Go Problem

Official AGA Rules of Go (Concise Version) (pdf)

Official AGA Rules of Go (Complete Version) (pdf)

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Wei-Ch'i

IGo

Paduk

Chinese

Japanese

Korean


PLAYING GO ONLINE

An excellent and complete guide to getting started Playing Go Online

 


© 2007 Mississippi Go Society. All rights reserved.