I'm a 21-year old student in my late IT engineering studies. I'm French.
I learned the rules of go two years ago when my school's chess club bought a goban. Since I was the only one who was interested, I just gave up the game. In december 2001, I put my fingers back into the stones after watching Hikaru no go :)
I'm fond of animes and mangas. and started learning Japanese also.
Now, I'm something between 13k and 18k. (I don't know exactly since I'm still making a lot of mistakes during my games ) I think I will know soon since I've just taken my federation licence and will be starting to go to tournaments.
May 23rd 2002 : I've been to my first tournament this last week-end, and I like it ! I think now it's a good way for a gouchi to play at his/her full potential.
I guess I'm something between 14k and 15k FFG (still 2-digit kyu but I'll be improving ;-) )
June 18th 2003 : Phew, one year since I put my 2 cents on SL. Now I'm like a 7k FFG. It's been some time since I touched the stones. Interestingly, it has helped me improve a little. It has helped me forget the crap I've learned and remember the principles and only the principles. Principles are good.
June 27th 2003 : I've recently realized that I lacked a lot of brute force training: I don't think about any of my moves during my games and that's really bad. I'm training a lot. I've finally found a go club near where I moved to. I'm playing a lot on internet, though I don't really like vertical gobans and flat stones. I think that's because I started on a real goban before playing on the internet. I learned to think with real stones I can grasp, then I think I know something you could call "physical go". I see some friends that used to play on internet improve a lot faster than I did and not being bothered by stone flatness. I think they learned something you could call "canonical go", where the game of go does not depend on the graspability (or whatever word suits here) of the stones. It's a very wierd feeling trying to think on front of my screen when I'm on the internet. I'm a lot weaker on KGS than I usually am.
May 6th 2004 : I just came back from Japan, and sometimes during my trip, I went to Go salons to play go. They told me I was san kyuu gurai, i.e. about 3k. I don't know the difference between french ranking and japanese ranking, but I think I improved with time anyway.
Hi MrKoala. I would be very interested in which principles you have found to be of value. I am where you were a year ago. Yesterday I joined a club. Explanation would be welcome of course, but just a short list would be fine. -- mAsterdam
Hi, mAmsterdam. The principles I followed during my recent games are:
- Stay connected.
- Split opponent.
- 3 = territory, 4 = influence.
- Play far from the forces.
- I play a lot with influence.
And, more generally:
- When you don't play, read.
- When you don't read, ...
- Play a lot. Calculate on the goban. Play only thought out moves. Play thought out moves and see where your thinking failed.
- Play as if you didn't know joseki. You're not supposed to know them. There are a lot of cases where you can gain more by bending the joseki sequence you are playing.
My spiritual master told me that if pros can think about their next move for half an hour, it means that to way to follow is the brute force way.
And the last one:
- Love the game of go.
Thank you very much.