Go Software and Online Resources

by Sorin Gherman

This page is about software and Go websites that I used and can recommend to others.

Playing Go online

There are several online Go servers - so you can play Go on the internet anytime with players from around the world. I'm only listing here the ones I used and liked.

A special category is the one of turn-based Go servers where the moves are not in real time, but one moves whenever he is available - the time limits are very long (one or more days per move). A game takes weeks/months to complete, but it's much more relaxed than on a normal Go server, and one can play many games at the same time:

Gobase

Gobase is a website that offers both the database and the searching as an online service. Just follow the "Pattern search" link, then "Enter your repository" and then "Edit board". It will return up to 100 professional games that match the position you entered.

Game viewers and editors

I use Drago - very lightweight download, my favourite software for recording and replaying games. I also use it to search game patterns in a game collection.

Go Encyclopedias

GoGoD

The best Go encyclopedia I know of is GoGoD. I bought this in 2001 or so (they must have added a lot to it meanwhile), but I was delighted with their articles on Go history, players, events...

Sensei's Library

While not an encyclopedia in the strict sense, Sensei's Library is a wonderful resource. Use the search field to look up on anything Go related - you'll most of the times find something useful.

Live games broadcast

Some of the Go servers do live broadcasts on the internet of top professional Go games.

In order to fully enjoy following these matches, I recommend to look up the players' names and career highlights in advance on Sensei's Library to get familiar with them.

The best server I know of for live broadcasts is Cyberoro. Every Thursday in Japan (Wednesday evening in US, midnight in Europe) there are top professional games at the Nihon Ki-in that you can follow live. There are also top pro games from China and Korea very often - but I don't know the schedule.

Also, IGS does live broadcasts for important titles - look under the "Events" section. The advantage here is that you can kibitz in English :-)

Online Go Communities

I recommend LifeIn19x19 and Reddit Baduk.

Computer programs playing Go

It used to be the case that computer-go programs were not able to compete with top humans, unlike in chess. Every changed once AlphaGo was created.

One can download a free computer-go program that is very strong - Leela version 0.9.0 reached 8 dan on KGS in February 2017. I recommend to download and play with it, it is a good way to train.