1995 Ing World Computer Goe Championship

report by David Fotland

The 1995 World Computer Go Congress was held on November 4 and 5 in Seoul, South Korea. This year Acer no longer co-sponsored the competition. Instead, there were several new sponsors, with the main one being Hangul and Computer Company (HNC), the largest Korean language software company. In addition to the usual prizes provided by the Ing Foundation, HNC paid 1/2 air fare to any program that won two games.

This year's competition had a smaller than usual field of 10 programs. Star of Poland missed its first congress in over 10 years, since the author, Janusz Kraszek, was injured in an automobile accident. Rumor has it that he might host next year's competition in Poland.

This year the tournament was organized a little later than usual, and invitations to the qualifying tournament were not available until early October, which may have prevented some programs from entering.

Since there were only 10 programs, and the results of the first 3 places were clear after 5 rounds, the sixth round was not played.

The final result was:

1st5 winsHandtalkChen ZhiXing
2nd4 winsGo4++Michael Reiss
3rd3 winsGo IntellectKen Chen
4th3 winsMany Faces of GoDavid Fotland
5th3 winsStoneKao Kuo Yuan and Chih-wen Hsueh
6th2 winsExplorerMartin Müller
7th2 winsSasonChang Ho Lee
8th2 winsBig StoneDong Chul Lee
9th1 win Rex 95Han Jung Kim
10th0 winsRight ThoughtMin Ho Kwak

The top programs are still fairly close. Handtalk won all its games, but only beat Go Intellect and Go4++ by 9 points each. Go4++ beat Go Intellect by 15 points, and in 3 additional friendship games after the tournament, Go intellect won two (by 35 and 23 points), and Go4++ beat Go Intellect again by 60 points. Many Faces and Go4++ were not paired in the tournament, but in 3 friendly gams afterwards, Go4++ won two and Many Faces won one.

Handtalk won 200,000 NT dollars for first place, then went on to challenge 3 human experts at 15 stone handicap. The 15 stone prize has been attempted 4? times before (by Goliath, Handtalk, and Go Intellect) without success. This year, the human experts were 3 youth champions, 9 or 10 years old. They were given a few minutes to practice, then the games began. Handtalk looked like it was doing very well, then around move 100, a reporter stepped on the main power cord and all the computers shut down.

All 3 games were started from the beginning, and Handtalk went on to win 2 of the three games, losing to the 9 year old, and winning another 100,000 NT dollars. Handtalk immediately challenged at the 13 stone handicap and won 2 of three again, for another 133,333 NT dollars. Next year the Human challenge will be at 11 stones handicap.

Full tournament grid (not in order of final result):

2Go Intellect+3+5-1-438
3Many Faces+9-2-1+6+736
8Right Thought-3-6-9-10-60 
9Big Stone-3-6+8-5+1021
10Rex 95-5-4-7+8-91 

This entire report was written by David Fotland.

Other computer Go Tournament results