Tabbi: Bridging Language Barriers with AI - Our Founders' Story

Tabbi: Bridging Language Barriers with AI - Our Founders' Story

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Tabbi began with an appreciation for the challenges non-native English speakers face every day. The founders share a passion for leveling the language playing field and empowering individuals. April, Marty, and Dan each have stories and backgrounds that support a shared mission: to make people as effective in English as they have been in their primary language.

Today, we want to share the stories and values that drive us at Tabbi.

April's Story:

After being a debate champion and an award-winning writer in Korea, my life took an unexpected turn when I moved to the US. My once-celebrated communication skills had little value. I was left feeling misunderstood and insignificant. This experience ignited my desire to help people bridge the language inequality gap, to unlock the potential of millions of non-native English speakers.

Ten years ago, I founded ChattingCat, an instant English correction service powered by crowdsourced English speakers. It became popular among non-native English speakers and helped many people land their dream jobs and schools, but I had to shut it down due to a legal issue.

With the emergence of AI, it became clear that a more efficient solution was possible. I decided to embark on Tabbi, a venture that uses AI to unleash the potential of people seeking language support. I believe Tabbi has the potential to redefine and elevate global communication across languages and cultures.

Marty's Story:

My work has spanned a variety of software engineering roles, from working at an early game company to designing algorithms for business language analysis to the development of apps for video editing. Over that time, I’ve realized that as technologies change quickly, I’m most motivated by the impact and benefits the tools can have for real people.

When I heard April explain her longtime vision for a world where all people could communicate effectively in business, I was struck by how rarely the problem was addressed with real innovation. Yes, there were numerous tools for learning English, but April realized more direct solutions must be possible, and that these could scale and uplift people at all levels. Thus I was introduced to ChattingCat and then Tabbi.

For me, this would be an opportunity to apply a new technology, generative AI, to realize value almost immediately. The rate at which new ideas can be built, delivered, and improved is phenomenal. I’m excited to be part of Tabbi, a team dedicated to solving human communication problems and hopefully helping a lot of people improve their lives.

Dan's Story:

I’ve spent my whole life adapting to different cultures and languages. Since childhood, I’ve constantly experienced the challenges of speaking or writing in the appropriate way for the environment. Fortunately, language was less of an issue as the early exposure to different languages gave me a head start. Over the years, I observed many friends and colleagues struggling to not only understand the culture but also speak and write fluently. I noticed that many people were talking ‘past’ each other; they thought they were on the same page, but were misunderstanding the nuances. I often had to jump in to help clarify details or ease any tension.

When April shared Tabbi’s mission, it immediately resonated with me. I recognized the potential for Tabbi to empower non-native professionals, enabling them to confidently and effectively express their thoughts, get recognized for their true value, and capture all the opportunities they deserve. I am excited to be a part of this bold and impactful mission.

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At Tabbi, we are enthusiastic about helping create a world of new opportunities, a world where language is no longer a barrier but a bridge to success. We envision professional communication enhanced by each person’s specific knowledge and unique experiences. We are driven to make an innovative service that helps individuals reach their full potential.

In this blog, the founders of Tabbi will take turns sharing their stories and knowledge. We hope you find Tabbi's blog both interesting and useful, and that we can establish a deep connection with you. We invite you to join us on this journey toward a more connected and equitable world.