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An interview with Prof. Lindauer, head of the Institute of Artificial Intelligence at the Leibniz University, Hannover

An interview with Prof. Lindauer, head of the Institute of Artificial Intelligence at the Leibniz University, Hannover

Hello, Prof. Lindauer! You will be a keynote speaker at the 2nd International Conference on Go Studies, we are very excited to have you there. Could you please introduce yourself and tell us about your go journey?

My name is Marius Lindauer, and I’m a professor of Machine Learning at the Leibniz University Hannover, where I head the Institute of Artificial Intelligence (LUH|AI).

I started to play go when I was sixteen years old, so at a time when I could easily beat an AI after playing for a few months. With the advent of AlphaGo and its successors, no one can (reasonably) do it these days, even after spending their entire life studying.

Like many in my generation, Hikaru no Go was why I started playing go. I was very fortunate to meet awesome players in my neighbourhood in Berlin very quickly. Two years later, I joined the board of the Berlin Go Association (GoVB) for roughly a decade and served as the Vice President of the German Go Federation (DGOB) for another year – a very formative time for me. 

For my professional career, go playing also had quite an impact. It is one of the reasons why I looked into AI and tried to develop a go AI and general-game-playing AI at the beginning of my PhD. Admittedly, my friends and I weren’t very successful compared to human playing capabilities back then, but it helped me understand AI’s limitations and opportunities. Maybe without go, I would never become an AI researcher.

With AI, the go landscape changed a lot, from new tools to new trends of play and AI vocabulary. What do you think about this, is it ethical to see AI taking over the go discipline in such a powerful way? Is AI the new standard?

For me, playing go was always like reaching for the stars. It is a never-ending story of improving oneself, developing better strategies, sharpening our minds and extending our creativity. With the advent of AI, this has not changed at all, but in addition to playing with other go players (which is still the most enjoyable way of spending time with go for me), we now have another tool at our disposal: AI. Now that AI programs have become so strong, it is only reasonable to use it to explore the many possibilities of go even further and step into new undiscovered lands. 

AI, in general, is becoming increasingly powerful and can do many tasks for us, even surpassing our own capabilities by quite a bit. We are only at the start of this journey, and there will be much greater disruptive changes beyond go AI because of new AI systems. On the one hand, I believe that we as humans should be more humble – we are not the best at everything. On the other hand, we must re-learn how to make the best use of AI systems. Our goal should not be to match the standards of AI, but we have to strive to use it in the best possible ways that will augment our capabilities and thus lead to a bright future.

AI is sometimes described as learning by itself, almost magically. You have been working on reinforcement learning. Could you walk us through all the human efforts and engineering steps to develop such a model? What is a typical time-frame between pitching an idea and having a first prototype?

There are many different ways how to approach a project based on AI. Reinforcement learning is one of them, that is, we want to teach an agent to achieve goals by performing a sequence of actions in a defined environment. For go, this means that the states of the environment are the positions on the go board; the actions are placing (and capturing) stones and the goal is to win. This concept is straightforward for games such as go. In practice, it is often much more complicated: How can we reward an agent such that it learns the “correct” behaviour to achieve its goals and will not find undesired shortcuts? How can we represent the states of an environment such that they are sufficiently informative to determine what is the best action but, at the same time, do not provide unnecessary or overly-complex information? How can we define a range of actions that allows for sufficiently fine-grained control but, at the same time, do not blow up the complexity of the problem?

Next, we need to collect data by letting the agent try things out. In a real-world scenario, we cannot crash super expensive robots all the time; so, we need simulations. This is, again, very trivial for go (for example, playing some random games as an internal simulation), but very complex for real applications. Going from an imperfect simulation to physical systems comes with a bunch of further challenges. On top of these, we need to decide which of the many existing reinforcement learning algorithms is reasonable. The famous AlphaGo combined Monte Carlo Tree Search with Deep Neural Networks. Although this is a fairly simple combination (in view of what we know now, eight years later), Google Deepmind needed to apply state-of-the-art optimisation approaches (such as Bayesian Optimisation) to get the best out of the system. All in all, coming up with a first prototype can take only a few weeks assuming one has sufficient computing power and a reasonable simulation – my students often have to implement first prototypes of their ideas within a week – but deploying a robust, trustworthy and well-performing reinforcement learning agent can take months or even years depending on the complexity of the underlying task to be solved. (Side note: My research is on automated machine learning to make this development process much more efficient and faster, hopefully enabling everyone to use AI flexibly in the future.)

Could you (try to) explain what were the key challenges of AI in the Go world and how Google Deepmind first, followed by others, overcame them by developing new models?

Researchers tried for many decades to find smart ways to search through all possible combinations of how one could play a game of go. With theoretically 3361 possible positions on the board and many more possible game sequences, they tried to tame this instance complexity by implementing many human heuristics of how the game would proceed (e.g., how to play a ladder). Looking back, this was doomed to fail. The intuition and flexible recognition of high-level patterns were simply missing. Deep neural networks closed this gap by predicting the next move from tens of thousands of games – strangely enough, leading to a rather Japanese style of playing at first because they found more games from Japanese players on the internet. Only using deep neural networks is also not sufficient, since humans do not build alone on intuition but also read ahead how the game will proceed. So, said in simple terms, a combination of look-ahead computation (using Monte-Carlo Tree Search) with computational intuition (using deep neural networks) was the breakthrough for developing super-human-level go AIs.

Did the development of go AIs have a meaningful impact on your own research?

In the early days of my research career, I dreamed of building my own go AI. However, I was also a bit too late with my ideas. That Google Deepmind more or less solved AI for go was sad on the one hand because yet another challenge in AI research was gone, but on the other hand, it was one of the many puzzle pieces showing the great potential of AI in many different applications. The AlphaGo paper by Google Deepmind has been cited more than 18,000 times, showing the significant impact of this research.

Big leaps forward have since been achieved in AI, image recognition in 2012 thanks to Deep Convolutional Networks, mastering go in 2017 thanks to Reinforcement Learning, “smart” chatbots recently with Transformers. What kind of disruptive innovation might happen in the future? Which underlying AI technology might be the next “boom” in the next years?

So far, we have not even fully understood the disruptive changes that Large Language Models like ChatGPT have brought us. It will change so many things, like art, education, jobs, politics, law and much more. Although many people believe that Large Language Models are a fairly recent breakthrough, that is not quite true. In fact, the major breakthrough was a paper in 2017 called “Attention is All You Need”, which introduced Transformers. In the last few years, we have just better understood how to make the best use of Transformers and scaled it up to crazy sizes. In that sense, we have had no major breakthrough in the last seven years, but many important small breakthroughs across the board. Major challenges ahead of us include teaching AI causality (i.e., having a deep logical understanding of what consequence follows what action) and how to make AI energy efficient. Using ChatGPT just once requires roughly 30 times more than a single search query at Google – with already more than 180 million users of ChatGPT, this won’t scale further if energy is a limited resource.

Despite the visibility brought to the game by AI, go is facing popularity challenges in some countries. Is there more to discover with AI and go, or have we reached a limit?

We should ask ourselves why we played go in the first place. Do we play go instead of chess because chess was “solved” by computers in the 90s? Do we play go because we believe that we are superior to computers? In fact, this might be true for some players. But overall, I believe that we play because of the beauty of the game in the face of its simplicity. In an age in which everything moves very fast (especially the advances in AI), it is ever more important to slow down and contemplate our own life – I believe that go is ideal for that. Furthermore, a decreased attention span because of modern media and games has cost us quite a bit of our own mental capabilities. Go is an opportunity to sharpen the mind and to learn how to focus on things. This has not changed in an age of AI, but this will become more and more important in the future. We have to reflect on the reasons why we believed that go is an amazing game, that is not only fun but also supports us in shaping ourselves.

Go is often compared to real life, through its principles but also through the way it structures space, building areas, attacking, putting pressure on the opponent, killing and so on. In old times, and maybe even now, it was not rare to have war chiefs with decent go abilities, in China, for example. If we consider the very large gap between the average go player and AI, isn’t it frightening, in the sense that if go is a metaphor of life and war, then AI simply killed the game. It gives us goosebumps if we imagine what it means on a bigger scale, don’t you think?

I don’t believe that every go player would be a great war strategist. Although it might help us learn strategic thinking and has a frightening complexity, the real world is much more complicated than go. Even with the advent of ChatGPT and co, it is still true that current AI systems do not have a real understanding of the world. Thus, asking an AI to fight a real war would be naive (and I can only warn about it). 

Furthermore, we should always ask ourselves what is the value of human life. For me, it has the greatest value of all, and I would never like to see an AI make decisions about the life and death of humans, especially not in a war situation. Nevertheless, there is so much more we can achieve with AI in the face of major challenges, such as climate change and diseases. Therefore, we should focus on how to use AI to solve these challenges instead of creating new challenges because of AI.

Thank you very much for your time!

Dear reders, Prof. Lindauer. will deliver the keynote presentation at the International Conference on Go Studies during the EGC, on August 7th. You can check his profile here. To offer a talk tailored to your interest, please let us know by 2024 June 30th any questions regarding AI you may have to Prof. Lindauer here. He will base his keynote presentation on the questions submitted.

Thank you very much!

An interview with Žiga, co-founder of the Slovenian company Razum, EGC 2024 bronze sponsor

An interview with Žiga, co-founder of the Slovenian company Razum, EGC 2024 bronze sponsor

Hi Žiga!

Thank you for agreeing to answer a few questions for the EGC2024 news. We want to know a bit more about our supporters and sponsors and I'm sure it will be highly interesting to all the Go community.

Please tell us who you are and how you discovered Go, to start with!

Hey, my name is Žiga Hajduković, I'm a 2-kyu Go player and I run a research and development studio. At Razum (which translates to reason, mind), we focus on designing and developing mobile apps.

I discovered Go a quarter of a century ago during my summer student job, when an older physics student was playing it on his computer and I, as a fan of abstract board games, was immediately curious. So, I started clicking away in igowin to warm up.

I actually quit Go a couple of times as it was too frustrating. Then I started playing online with a co-worker, and I was hooked!

It wasn't until 2016 that I first played a live game on an actual board with actual stones, it was in a tournament in Bled. I lost, to Mirta Medak and her father, Damir. I didn’t go to another tournament until three years later. But after the COVID-19 pandemic settled down, I got my daughter (now thirteen) into the game, and we started going to tournaments a lot more, so now I am REALLY hooked!

We would love to know more about Razum. What attracted you as a company to get involved in the game of go? Or rather, how did the go world invade your company?

Well, as a company we took a dive into Go as I had this idea last year to make 9x9 Go sets as New Year business gifts for our partners, instead of the usual bottles and practical thingies.

But, my idea was bigger than that. As we work together with our partners in fairly large teams (30+), we also feel the natural need to socialize outside of work commitments. Also, working on a project together for years inevitably brings friendly relationships with it.

So, I started organizing Go workshops with our partners and friends as a sort of a team-building exercise.

Of course, it’s all very lightweight, with emphasize on socializing, but it was really well received. I made them bring their newly-acquired Go sets, explained the rules briefly and off we went! They all played a couple of 9x9 games each.

We are an R&D company with a focus on top-quality custom mobile app development. This means we only have the highest-quality talent in our team, and we only work with partners who are also interested in the excellence we deliver. I believe this focus on quality requires great mental effort, and this is where Go comes in. I think it’s the perfect game to practice to keep your mind sharp and focused. Not to mention the countless other skills and types of thinking one can deduct from Go and apply to real life problems.

Having said that, Go is not the only game to do that, I just happen to like it most. We play chess and Magic the Gathering in our company regularly, as well, to just name a few of the physical board/card games. There’s also Age of Empires, Hearthstone and others that we play online in the evenings.

Do you have perhaps some ambitions at EGC 2024 to find like-minded future collaborators?

Honestly, I am hoping to meet some potential talented people, but also potential clients. I believe partnerships with common interests can have greater chances of success. I would love to see our company developing a Go-related app in the future!

How do you imagine the EGC2024 in Toulouse? Which event are you looking forward to the most?

After my experience at EGC2023 (my first EGC), I am most keen on taking part in the main tournament.

But some of those side events, like playing a game with a 9-dan pro, are such an amazing opportunity!

Also, I have fond memories of Hwang Inseong’s lectures featuring Kung Fu Panda, and special game type events, like Chess & Go.

To be honest, everything about an EGC is just brilliant, so I am expecting a lot of mind-bending new experiences!

What does go represent for you, if we can start a philosophical discussion? Many go principles can be applied in real life and in business, and it also teaches important values. Has it ever been useful in your life?

I agree so much with the principles of Go being applied to real life and business. One of the best aspects of Go I find is the fact that it is not (usually) about annihilating your opponent, but one only has to win by an ever-so-tiny margin, even just half a point. And the whole game reflects that principle, where with every move you are trying to tip the balance of the whole game (or life) little by little in your favour.

I think the usefulness of Go in my life comes a lot from the mental abilities that I gain playing Go, like focus and ability to make decisions under pressures of time and other things.

If you could travel in time and space, which Go player would you like to play with and why?

This may sound strange, but I haven’t explored Go history and famous Go players much yet.

Having said that, I recently took a dive into the history of Go in Slovenia. Turns out Slovenia had quite a formidable Go player base in the 60s and 70s.

Just recently purchased the first Slovenian book on Go (GO IGRA (translated: THE GAME OF GO), by Ervin Fink) on an online flea market.

So, I would have to say I’d love to travel back to the 60s or 70s and play with Ervin Fink and other players from that era who brought the game to Slovenia and ignited the Go revolution, firstly within the Chess playing community and beyond it later. I’d have loved to be a part of that discovery phase of the game.

What did you feel when Google Deepmind first announced its achievements with the human-machine battle involving Fan Hui 2p, followed by the AlphaGo match? Do you think we still have soooo much to discover (and suffer) about AI go, or are we already doomed forever?

Amazed. I remember watching the Lee Sedol games streamed live online. It was just astonishing. As I mentioned, I taught myself Go with the help of a (fairly primitive) AI 25 years ago. Another thing is, I was always into AI, ever since I started to learn programming.

Now, with GPT, we are also starting AI projects within our company, so I am really excited about this next “AI era”. I think we definitely have “soooo much to discover” still. AI (i.e. AlphaGo, KataGo...) is still quite a blackbox – it shows variations, but it’s not really capable of teaching. There is still the “solving” of the game left for us to do, like how Othello was recently solved. That is, if we want to go mathematical on it. We’re definitely not doomed, apart from not being able to beat AI anymore.

I definitely enjoy the new AI tools popping up (like KaTrain and AI-Sensei) and gladly use them while I teach and learn!

Alright, now let’s talk about your country! What is the go scene like in Slovenia?

We have around 42 active players (that is more than 20 per million capita!), ranked from 20-kyu to 5-dan, and we meet on a weekly basis at a couple of locations around the country, most prominently in Ljubljana. We organize five regular yearly tournaments, participate in various events (like Japanese-themed days) to promote Go and, this year, we also started several Go classes. There’s a weekly open class now in the library in the centre of our capital Ljubljana and we also started a go class in three primary schools across Slovenia.

TLDR: We are planning nothing short of a rebirth of Go in Slovenia!

Do you have a Go-related short anecdote?

Ha, I think I do. So, as I mentioned, I just started a Go class in our local school this year. My daughters signed up (duh!), along with some of their friends and also a small number of first graders (six years old).

So, I manage to find and collect all the Go students that applied, and we come into the designated classroom for the first time. And this boy (six years old) asks: “Is this where we are having the classes?”

I respond, cautiously: “Yes. You don't like it?”

And the boy goes: “Oh! I thought we're having Go classes in the gym!”

🤷Might be the intro text on next year’s application form….

The application form intro text for the school Go class goes like this (translated):

Go is one of the oldest board games. Legend has it that it was invented by a Chinese general over 3,000 years ago to teach his son how to think strategically. The game requires long-term planning, assessment of the situation and the ability to read the opponent’s intentions. All this, in turn, helps to develop many skills such as critical thinking, patience, concentration and empathy.

Join us at the Go club, become part of this magical game and discover if you have a general within you!

Thanks to Žiga for answering our questions! We’re looking forward to meeting you at EGC2024. We will keep an eye on the progress of Go in Slovenia!

Volunteer Quest German Experience: an interview with Loïc Lefebvre, in charge of the future helping staff.

Volunteer Quest German Experience: an interview with Loïc Lefebvre, in charge of the future helping staff.

Hi Loïc! You’re one of the organisers of EGC2024 and a very active Go player in general. You were at EGC2023 in Germany and used the opportunity to advertise our Congress and recruit volunteers to help out next year. You also joined the EGC2023 staff, didn’t you? Can you tell us a bit about your experience in Leipzig?

Yes, it was not only a great Congress but also a good experience. Although, I only joined the EGC2023 “crew” in the second week after it had already warmed up and got off to a good start during the first week. Regarding the advertisement I was doing for EGC2024, there were some lovely cards made by our communications team (you) that children and adults alike were collecting. But I wasn’t just advertising the Congress, I also registered a bunch of people and gave them information about what we have planned!

What is it like to wake up in the morning and think that you’re going to meet players who are prepared to travel a long way to Toulouse just to help out?

I think I know most of them at least a little bit. In France, we’re lucky to have a host of volunteers ready to help out with tournaments, whether it’s setting them up or running the very vital bar. For the ones I don’t know, I hope we’ll be able to have a chat beforehand, but for sure it’s a great challenge to volunteer for this Congress. There are also people from abroad who want to help, sometimes because they are accompanying someone, sometimes out of pure devotion. One example is this German guy who came every day by car to take registrations and who lived more than an hour and a half away!

Do you have moments of doubts and low morale, when you wonder what you’re doing there and whether everything is really going to work out, and whether the volunteers aren’t just applying to become volunteer because they are in a “yeah EGC2023 was so great” mood, and eventually will give up when EGC2024 arrives?

I’m more the type of person who trusts people. There might be some who won’t show up..., but I also know that other volunteers will appear to replace them. As for the volunteers in charge, I’m not worried, we’ve got a solid crew. Of course, I’m not saying that it will be all perfect, setting everything up will be a challenge for sure. But the volunteers are aware that we’ll have to put our backs into it at the start and we’ll be joined by a lot of players who will also be lending a hand to support the workload of the other volunteers.

What else did you learn in Germany, from your encounters with the Go community and the German crew? Is there a magic formula for organising a Congress?

A magic recipe??? And why not a divine move while we’re at it? There’s obviously something to be learned from every EGC. There are things that work one year and not the next, things that work all the time (and also things that never work, but that’s something we’ll avoid repeating!) I’ve learnt from my years as a volunteer that you have to do things seriously, but with some detachment. We’re not perfect, we don’t organise this every year – we’re amateurs after all. But we do plan ahead, we think things through in advance with a lot of brains. Then we try to work out who will be the best people to get the machine running, and whether they’re willing to join the team (if they’re not already in it).

Alright! 2024 is going to be awesome! Did you find enough volunteers? Are they enthusiastic? What are you most looking forward to at EGC2024? (without betraying too many professional secrets...)

It’s going well, the crew is growing and growing. I’ve already got over 70 volunteers responsible for various tasks, from setting up the clocks to organising the whole EGC.

As I was saying, we’ll need a lot of little helping hands on the first few days, especially to answer simple questions about the clocks, how to find your table etc., but it will be easier after a couple of days.

I think we’ll still be able to find people and skills because with the French Go Federation we are about to organise some training courses (in tournament management and other areas). There will be a session in Montpellier for the southern leagues, and a session near Paris for the northern leagues, followed by a more in-depth online session.

What I’m most looking forward to…, hmmm, I think, it’s the communication team’s stand-up routine during the ceremonies with the duo Milena B + Quentin R! :D**

In any case, if you’re reading this and it inspires you to join us, don’t hesitate to send a message to volunteers@egc2024.org !

I see, it all sounds very promising! Thank you for your time and good luck with the EGC2024 crew.

Let's go to Germany!

Let's go to Germany!
Artwork @Virguleart

Dear Go players!

First of all, Happy New Year and happy year of the Rabbit!
In this newsletter, we’ll first make a small but very very important announcement. Most of you might have guessed already 😏:

The European Go Congress 2023 will happen this summer!

Now, let’s get serious, here is the summary of this newsletter!

  • A few words about EGC2023
  • Registered participants: sleeping places!
  • A sneak peak of the empty venue

EGC2023

poster EGC 2023
Artwork by Camille Lévêque/Stoned on the goban

The European Go Congress 2023 will take place in Markkleeberg, near Leipzig, in Germany, from the 22nd of July to the 5th of August. And yes, you can already register, book hotel rooms and train your Go skills. Also, we highly recommend you register to their newsletter as well: since the event is already in the “upcoming” part of your brain, it will be useful to follow closely any new development regarding the schedule and events!

For a bit of context, the 2023 EGC was supposed to take place in Ukraine. It was first cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic, then in 2021 for the same reason, then postponed to 2023 and now postponed to better days.

In autumn 2022, Germany volunteered, despite the very short preparation time, to organize the 2023 edition. We sincerely hope that it will be a grand success and that you’ll join and make you all even more eager to join in 2024.

As we speak, more than 360 players already plan to participate!

And of course, we (the EGC2024 team) will also be there to introduce you to the French city of Toulouse and tell you more about the events we have planned. Aaaaand as always, we’ll come with surprises ;-)

Sleeping places for registered players

Good news (oh yeah, one more), we’ve negotiated sleeping places and rooms on site in student studios.

Priority will be given to the first-registered players, of course, and we’ll also save rooms for groups who said they will bring kids from a Go school but still don’t know precisely who will come.

We’re also working to get better prices for you for flight tickets and nearby hotels.

And a few pictures from the place!

Welcome!

ENAC

If you see this, it means you found the place, congratulations! 🥳

Panorama

If you can see the venue like this, you probably have a sort of 360° creepy vision but hey, maybe it helps on the go board!

campus

A typical view from the eyes of a Go player taking a fresh air intensive breath, answering the “you won?” from his friend with “nah, still playing but tsssh I messed up a sequence although I was leading so much…” before getting back to the board with a small coffee or tea and renewed energy and ambition.

path

If you win 10/10 games, you may call this “the divine path to glory”

Next time, we may tell you more about the city itself and exciting updates.

Meanwhile, we sincerely hope to see you in the coming tournaments and at EGC2023!

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. We still have a bit of time to go before 2024, your questions also help us improve the event and make it better for you.


All the best!

   The EGC2024 team

Wow, 300!

Wow, 300!

🎉 Dear Go friends!

300 players..(ok..🤐 "almost" 300!!) that's the number of players who registered two years in advance to the EGC2024! Incredible!!😱✨ Of course, such a number has very big consequences...

1) we are even more motivated, thank you for your trust! 💪🫂

2) we can already start planning accomodation options. We'll plan something for the volunteers, of course, and we also want to save the cheapest rooms for the players from countries with lower wages, and for groups with small budget coming from far away.

As you may know, France is not very cheap 🥲💸 , so as a Go community, we hope we can deal with it and help you plan in advance. We will do our best to make it possible for everyone to enjoy the Congress 💪✨.

3) Speaking of groups... some of you already plan to go with their Go school but don't know yet who, nor how many kids. And time flies... and fees also fly... and stress can reach hights 📈. No no no, that's not good! 😤

👍 So no worries! If you want to take part in the congress with a group (eg: National Youth team, Go school...), you can contact us! We will discuss group fees and will also help to arrange accomodation options once we get closer to 2024. 🫂

4) That was all... ah, and : Thank you all!! You're so awesome 😎

5) Have a great day and see you in some time for the next pack of news!

In the meantime, if you have any questions, write us!

If you have no questions, you have the right to remain silent!

if you want some more updates - not now but at some point - you can subscribe to our newsletter! 😗 👉 egc2024.org.

Maybe we'll tell you about your secret account on the website....

The team.

Nearly 100 players already registered! Wooohoooo!

Nearly 100 players already registered! Wooohoooo!

📢 Dear Go friends and readers of the newsletter! Our team is back from the EGC 2022, that took place in Vatra-Dornei, Romania. It was a wonderful experience and an incredible Congress. Applauds to the organizers! We were very happy to meet many players motivated to re-join the EGC in the coming years. See that, already 100 players registered for 2024!!!!!

In Romania, we had the chance to introduce in details the EGC 2024 to the EGF members during the Annual General Meeting and the players in general, and also discuss about organizing a congress. We could benefit from a lot of advices and experience from the EGC2022 and previous Congresses. It will be more than useful to prepare you a great event ☝️That's one of the powers of the Go community: sharing advices and tips, helping everyone improve, be that in Go or in EGC organization.

But ok, let's get to the point. Some veeeery important information:

[📣 Extra-important]

💶 • Early-bird fee will last until August 31st - register today to benefit from the special early entry fee, only 90€ for the two weeks!

💸 • ...and, if you register early, please consider also paying by the 31/08 :-) otherwise your early bird fee might...fly away!

[📣 Less important but still very important]

✨😳 • we had a nice walk in the future tournament place, the ENAC in Toulouse. It's big, nice, comfortable...We can already imagine the gobans, the stones sound ..."shtrshtr" when in the bowl, then "pa!" on the board. We can hear the "hhhhhmmmhffff" of strong players who misread a complicated situation and bow over the board in search of a desperate tesuji. We can picture the rengo tournament and the blitz tournament with clocks suffering from our love of Go 🥰 We can see the European Championship with its serious atmosphere and cameras looking with approbation at the moves of the top players, the big silence soon replaced by the growing whisper of game commentators after someone lost by 0.5...

Soon we'll share new updates, you can follow us on social medias - Facebook & Twitter

🍻 🇯🇵 🇨🇳 🇰🇷 • ah, yeah, we have one more big news! The website is now available in Japanese and Chinese, so you can share it with your Japanese and Chinese speaking friends. Korean should follow soon. Big thanks to our translators! 🥳

[📣 Maybe not important to you but important to us and you'll read it anyway]

• You're amazing, have a nice day and play a great Go 🤗

  The team.

Registations are open!

Registations are open!

Dear go friends!

As you may have heard (otherwise, probably you wouldn't be reading this at this moment), the European Go Congress 2024 will take place in France in Toulouse!

It will take place in the National School of Civil Aviation, and we are planing many many activities, also some game of Go.

We're super happy for this opportunity to organize such an awesome event and we want it to be an amazing experience for you as well.

To learn and prepare, what better choice than coming ourselves to a wonderful congress? We are right now participating to the EGC 2022 in Romania, Vatra-Dornei. The congress is going well and it's good to finally be all able to meet, play go and games and have fun. Despite the COVID uncertainty and the difficult political situation, the organizers and volunteers managed to prepare an incredible event and there are still a bit more than a week to go (or Go?)!

So we're looking forward to the EGC 2023 and then EGC 2024! In fact, you can already register and get the very very very early bird price!!

For the two weeks, if you register now it costs 90€.

And to be informed of all the updates, you can also subscribe to the newsletter.

See you around at the EGC 2022!

The team.