Kona is the codename for Google’s effort to model artificial intelligence (AI) advances in language fluency. The effort draws inspiration from the human brain (of course). Our neocortex (the outer layer of our brain that does most of our thinking) is a self-organizing hierarchy of modules, each of which learns, remembers, and recognizes, orders, and generates pattern sequences from lower-level modules. The new simulation builds a hierarchy of similarly structured components that encode increasingly abstract ideas as sequences, like the brain. Google is using their Smart Reply – a device that currently suggests possible replies to emails, but which is really a system for understanding the meaning of language – to test its advances. The goal is creating software as linguistically fluent as you or me. And more applications of Kona are in the works.