"He speaks with the guard."
Translation:Él habla con el guardia.
I would only guess that "guardián" is more related to the meaning of "guardian" than just "guard". Guardian is pretty archaic when referring to someone employed to protect another person or thing, but it holds slightly different meanings and connotations. I would assume that it would be better to use "guardián" rather than "guardia" for something like "Guardians of the Lost Ark". The difference between "guardia" and "guarda" is more subtle, though they are used very similarly. With these, the preferred variant is probably regional when not used in a way specific to that term.
I'm not a Spanish speaker, though, so these are just my suppositions from an English perspective.
Question was - Translate - "He speaks with the guard. " I responded "el hable con la guardia"
It gave this incorrect with the correct answer - "Él platica con la guardia."
Platica is a word that has never been used in my learning this far. I appreciate I should have used "habla" not "hable" but what is this "platica"?
I hope the correct answer was "Él plática con la guardia.", as otherwise I'd be mispronouncing the verb. Anyway, it's a Mexican word for chatting. Correction sentences for multiple errors don't seem to be Duolingo's strong suit. If you really typed it like that, both "el" and "hable" are wrong, and Duolingo seems to have picked a random accepted sentence that differs in both spots.
floerke: Personal "a" is not needed because their is no person as a direct object; in fact, there is no direct object in this sentence at all. The personal "a" is used when a known person is the direct object of the verb. For instance, "He helps the boy"; "Helps" is the verb; "the boy" is the direct object of the verb. (Direct Objects answer the questions "who" or "what".) Therefore, you need the personal "a" between "helps" and "the boy", so in Spanish it would be "Él ayuda al niño". (the "a" and "el" combined into "al"). If that is not enough confusion, one more thing, some people insist, and sometimes on Duolingo, the Direct Object Pronoun also is needed,so it would/could be: "Él lo ayuda al niño".
Hable is the subjunctive form of Hablar, but this sentence is definitely indicative. Él habla would have been accepted. I never know quite how Duo comes up with their suggestions, but they will be accepted answers. Many times they appear to be suggested because someone fought hard to get that translation approved. I have heard platicar translated more often as chat, but it looks as if Spanishdict.com does not quite agree.
Thus, "He's the guard but he's really a clerk." = "Él es el guardia pero en realidad es escribiente." Note that in English too "the" is used only for who actually fulfils the role, not for the profession. It's just that Spanish apparently treats the profession no different from other characteristics: "He is tall". doesn't have an article either.
I did some research and I believe guarda=guard (the verb - to guard) and guardia=guardian (noun - the person). I guess, in a similar way, you could interchange the words guard and guardian in English. However, also as with English, guard is only a verb and you couldn't guardian something...lol That's my hypothesis.
What you think is correct. At least, with an accent on the first letter it is: "Él habla a la guardia." = "He speaks to the guard.". However, that wasn't what we were asked to translate.
"He speaks with the guard." = "Él habla con la guardia." He isn't just talking to the guard: The guard is talking back as well.