A.I., Lost in Translation theverge.com

Victoria Song, the Verge:

I became the family Chewbacca. Family would speak to me in Korean, I’d reply back in English — and vice versa. Later, I started learning Japanese because that’s what public school offered and my grandparents were fluent. Eventually, my family became adept at speaking a pidgin of English, Korean, and Japanese.

This arrangement was less than ideal but workable. That is until both of my parents were diagnosed with incurable, degenerative neurological diseases. My father had Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. My mom had bulbar amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Their English, a language they studied for decades, evaporated.

This is one of those heartbreaking essays that will sit with me for a long time. It is nominally about how Humane’s wearable gadget struggled with translation features, but it is so much greater, as you can surmise from the quote.