When Yiying Lu and Jennifer 8. Lee reconnected in San Francisco last year, there was a problem: Lee had invited Lu over for dumplings, and Lu wanted to express her joy using an emoji — colorful emoticon-like images built into phones, websites, and computers — only to discover that there wasn't an emoji for dumplings.
"She was sending me pictures of all the dumplings she was cooking," Lu told NBC News. "I was like, 'fried dumplings, yum.' I tried to send her an emoji back and realized there wasn't one."
The omission inspired the two.