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New semester, new members?

The 2008 Fall semester at UCF began this week, and (by coincidence or not) the club saw a large block of potential new members attending last night.  I hope they will all return.

It occurred to me that it might be helpful to mention a few resources to those new to the game of Go.   I jotted a few things here, but I encourage any other members to leave comments on this post with their own ideas (assuming anyone other than me reads this site).

I’ve found Janice Kim’s book series very good for getting started. They are easy and quick reads, and even looking at the first volume should jump-start a beginner quite a bit. 

At the club meeting, we also discussed a few places to go to play the game online:
  • KGS is a very popular go server with people of all strengths
  • There’s a Florida “room” on KGS where you are likely to “see” other members of our club
  • A couple of us play on a turn-based / correspondence server called OGS
  • Another, popular real-time server is IGS
  • Most of us suggest avoiding sites like Yahoo Games
If you are very new to the game, you might consider downloading one of the many go clients that have AI engines in them (CGoban with GnuGo is very common).  Most of these players are not particularly strong, and once you get used to the game may actually impeded your playing, but could be good when you are just starting out.
And, of course, keep coming to the club!  I think nearly all of us are happy to help others learn the game.  I know one important reason I go is to learn more!  I hope all players will feel welcome, regardless of how new to the game they are.

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