Monday, April 04, 2005


I seem to have made a jump in reading ability. Not sure how it happened, but suddenly, I am able to see things that I wasn't able to see before. While doing life and death problems, I now actually read more of the sequence before jumping in with the 'likely move'. This has increased my problem level in the Many Faces of Go considerably. Of course, it has slowed down the tempo in which I can do my daily problems, but I think that is a good thing in this case.

The scary thing is that I find myself playing sequences out in my head when there isn't even a go board near. I go to bed thinking about go, and I wake up to myself going over a bunch of joseki in my head, getting really annoyed with myself when I can't picture a certain move perfectly or am forgetting a certain continuation. I play sequences while driving my van. I consider the merits of good and bad shape while loading the dishwasher. Yes, I think I can consider myself officially obsessed now :-p

Of course, I still have tons of room for improvement, and of course I still do way too many moves where I realize one micro second later that this was a big mistake. But it still is nice to feel some progress happening.

By the way, thanks to Tristen's advice, I stopped holding go stones in my hand while playing. Yes, it does make a difference, it helps me to prevent some of those 'I wasn't thinking' moves. Not all of them, but obliterating even a few of them does help my game.


Edward Hammerbeck said...

When you decide to place a stone, is it an intellectual (left-brain) decision or is it an intuitive decision (right brain)?

What I mean by intellectual is that you can decide to place a stone somewhere because many standard josekis recommend it and it is mathematically, probabilistically most likely to help you out. I would call counting liberties intellectual by this definition, for instance.

What I mean by intuitive is more abstract. This where you place a stone based on a feeling or impression, when your guts tell you defend here or cut there. Maybe it could be a little spirit whispering the right move in your ear (Hikaru No Go).

Or do you find that you use a combination of the two? I sometimes intellectually decide on, say, two possible moves; and I lay down the stone based on some vague internal notion of beauty or symmetry or something.

I dunno. I was just thinkin'. :)

Tristen said...

Glad to be of service. Keep it up.