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I'm Alexander Duytschaever, aka "Alex", born in Gent in 1967. After having spent thirteen years as a Fighter Controller, I quit the Belgian Air Force and started a career as Software Developer in the ATM domain.
I learned about Go some time in the 80'ies in Gent when I stumbled over a book written by Leon Vie, which activated my fascination for Go's black and white patterns.
I remember I tried to introduce Go (probably in the late 80') in a Shogi club (I met Richard Verkouille) that met in some cafe (forgot the name - it's a shop now) not far from the Botermarkt/Belfortstraat, without much success however. Although I remember having played the game with a school friend (David, 1983?), a few years later I moved to the other side of the country and had the occasion to really start discovering Go together with a former colleague, Christophe. Later I got Internet and we first tried the ASCII interface of NNGS - a rather unsatisfactory way to play - until DGS (June 2003) and later KGS came in sight.
Go is intimately woven into my daily life in several ways, my Go club is a source of joy as well as pain...
Currently I try to make Go more known in my vicinity. I try to understand how to successfully teach the rules to newcomers, even if - to be honest - I haven't seen but very few of those come back (but at least I try, heh). It is my point of view that Occidental Go players should devote at least some effort in (actively) promoting Go, rather than just (passively) enjoying it (I call this an egoistic attitude) and leaving it to newcomers to discover the game: unlike chess, Go is far less known in my part of this world, so it deserves more visibility.
In fact, I've given up Go promotion because I've given up my local club because I totally disagree with the behaviour and conduct of the few board members that elected themselve in the club. I think I did a great job in promoting Go in short as well as long term, but haven't had the impression of being acknowledged for that; as a result, I cannot invest energy in promoting a game so that the result will be reaped by the club. Now I'm venting my utter frustration about this on a former wiki of the club, which I had proposed because the wiki model of SL answered perfectly to a recurring situation in a small club where members come and go, and webmasters change all the time: http://gentgo.wikispaces.com/ (mainly Dutch). I was fed up being ignored all the time, while I was one of the few club members investing a lot of personal time in the club as well as in Go promotion.
Another area that interests me is the apparent beauty of the game hiding less elegant aspects (such as: why do we need all those rulesets). I need to solve the conflicting feelings I keep struggling with whenever I promote Go and refer to the elegance and simplicity of the rules ...
Feel free to browse collected Go walls at http://users.skynet.be/axd/go/walls.
I can be reached at *gmail at alexander.duytschaever@*com
More links at http://del.icio.us/axd/go
This page is becoming way too big - there's a persistent smell of http://c2.com/cgi-bin/wiki?WikiSquatting, seems to me...
- Great Quotes
- nice video on YouTube
- Handicap For Smaller Board Sizes
- nice to know what handicap to use on smaller boards
- RGG FAQ
- things you always wanted to ask
- Chris Lawrence made some gorgeous pics of his freshly acquired Go set
- drew my attention because of rules matters (don't go here if you're new to Go ;-)
The transition between Aug 2003 and Jun 2004 is what I more or less expected when I entered DGS as a 30k (I was not certain about my strength; until then, a player from Leuven had rated me around 15kyu after one game). In about a year I reached my actual strength, probably frustrating some players on DGS :-( I recommend DGS newcomers to play several unrated games with selected opponents before deciding on a rank - but that's something many DGS newcomers are not aware of, so the cycle keeps happening...
In August 2005, I joined the club in Gent.
During summer of 2006 I had a breakdown that is nicely visible in my rating graph.