Software Review

BGJ 122 Spring 2001

Reviewer: William Connolley

In my last game at the last London Open, both my opponent and I recorded our games on a Palm using – quick plug – PilotGOne:

www.skarpsey.demon.co.uk/pilotgone.html

they seem to becoming quite common. Now David Fotland has produced the Many Faces of Go Joseki Dictionary for the palmpilot, so I can see just where I went wrong in my first corner against Jim Clare.

For those unfamiliar with Palms, they are small personal data assistant (PDA) devices with limited computing and storage abilities, but very portable. I find mine invaluable and it will be even more useful now I have MFoG. Space is limited but the program plus a dictionary of a claimed 50,000 moves takes up only 79k, which is tolerable.



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BGJ 119 Summer 2000

Reviewer: Paul Hazelden

The good news: Go Professional III by Oxford Softworks is a nice, solid piece of Go-playing software. The bad news: it is, as far as I can tell, almost unchanged from the previous version. There may be some subtle changes to the Go engine, but as a rusty 8 kyu I haven’t worked out yet what they are.



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Probably obsolete and no longer available as of March 2014

In my last game at the last London Open, both my opponent and I recorded our games on a Palm using PilotGOne. Now Smart Games has produced the Many Faces of Go Joseki Dictionary for the palmpilot, so I can see just where I went wrong in my first corner against Jim Clare.

For those unfamiliar with Palms, they are small personal data assistant (PDA) devices with limited computing and storage abilities, but very portable. I find mine invaluable and it will be even more useful now I have MFoG. Space is limited but the program plus a dictionary of a claimed 50,000 moves takes up only 79KB, which is tolerable. If you haven't got one, this article will be of little interest (I wouldn't buy one just to run MFoG) but if you have, then read on...



Last updated Fri Nov 20 2015. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.

The following information was correct as of 1996, however as of February 2013 it's unclear whether it's still available.

It is primarily a Go-playing program, but has a number of features which add to its value for Go teaching. Installation is easy.



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Review by Nick Wedd, from British Go Journal 128

These are both programs for Windows, by Anders Kierulf. They are both available from the SmartGo website. SmartGo:Board costs 29 dollars, SmartGo:Player costs 59 dollars.



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Many Faces, unlike the two programs which beat it in the championship, is a complete Go package. It does everything from teach the rules of Go to a complete beginner, to playing near the highest levels so far achieved by computers.

The latest version of David Fotland's program Many Faces of Go has recently been released. This follows its success in the FOST World Computer Go championship this autumn, in which it came third and was awarded an 8-kyu certificate by the organisers.

Many Faces, unlike the two programs which beat it in the championship, is a complete Go package. It does everything from teach the rules of Go to a complete beginner, to playing near the highest levels so far achieved by computers.



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Review by Nick Wedd, from British Go Journal 128, Autumn 2002

In issue 109 of this Journal, I wrote a review of version 10 of David Fotland's program "The Many Faces of Go". Since then, I have been recommending it as the best all-round Go program for someone who is willing to pay for the best. Version 11 has now been released. Like version 10, it is a program for Windows, and comes on a CD.

Many Faces of Go is primarily a Go-playing program - it is one of the world's strongest such programs. In addition, it comes with a large amount of other useful material, and many Go players will value it for this, rather than for its playing ability.



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In Number 101 of the British Go Journal Journal, I wrote a review of version 9.0 of David Fotland's program "The Many Faces of Go". Since then, I have been recommending it as the best all-round Go program for someone who is willing to pay for the best.

Version 10.0 has just been released. Whereas version 9.0 was a Dos program (and therefore compatible with Windows), version 10.0 is a Windows 95 program. It works with Windows 95 and NT, but not with Windows 3.x. It includes everything that was present in version 9.0, and in the version 9.0 "Deluxe Addon", with many improvements.

It is supplied on a CD, and is very easy to install, though it needs about 16 Mb of disk space.

If you use it with Windows NT, you may find that it runs only in 16-colour mode. This is due to a bug, but there is a free fix for this bug, which you can download.



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The advertisement says that the program has a 4 kyu diploma from Japan, this seems optimistic, the first game I played against it I gave it 9 stones and won by 241 (But I am a mean handicap player, I can normally give a real 4 kyu about 100 komi in a 9 stone game).



Last updated Fri Feb 18 2011. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.

HandTalk is written by Professor Chen Zhixing, of Zhongshau University, Guangzhou, China.

First impressions are disappointing: it is a Dos program, and offers a minimum of facilities. You can choose among three board sizes, set the handicap, choose whether to play Black or White, and assign it a playing strength from 1 to 7. You can also set up positions, and save and re-load games. When playing, you can take back moves. But that is the limit of what you can do. The board is shown using graphics, with red and black stones on a green board; but on my screen there is something slightly odd about the graphics, as the first character of each menu line appears mostly "wrapped round" to the right side of the screen. I assume that graphics hardware that is standard here may be hard to obtain in China.



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