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[computer-go] Storing Spatial Relationships

What algorithms are known or reference implementations available for storing/tracking the spatial relationship between stones/chains/groups/etc?

I've seen some discussion about storing a list of neighbors of a stone/chain/group, but have not seen anything about tracking the spatial dependency of such information.

When I initially think about this stuff, I think about a sparse matrix implementation. For each row/column storing a linked list of members. I don't quite like this because I can't pick an element within the sparse matrix and find its nearest neighbors with ease. I'm almost thinking I'd want to store the surrounding objects in some kind of spatially significant way.
I almost wonder if there's a way to have a minimalistic set of useful neighbors and then being able to use the spatial significance of the neighbor's neighbors to fill any gaps. Of particular interest to me is up/down/left/right of the specified stone within +/- 1 row/column. This has the effect of directly catching the common jumps and approaches.

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