This actually goes along with something I've been wondering. In science, speed and velocity are two different things (speed is just a number, but velocity also has a direction) and I'm curious if anybody knows if and how that distinction is made in Spanish, since they use "velocidad" for "speed".
I'm not a native Spanish speaker, but I think that in Spanish, "rapidez" is the equivalent of the English word "speed."
Here is a breakdown in Spanish of the difference between "rapidez" and "velocidad:"
What does seem awkward to me - as a native English speaker - is the inclusion of the word "at" in the English translation. It's unnecessary.
There has never been a fixed rule in English against ending a sentence in a preposition. It was a passing fad. You will hear English people say this as "what speed are you going at?" the majority of the time.
PS - while you can get away with "what speed are you going?" in a conversation, the longer you think about it the worse it sounds. One does not "go a speed".
Good to know. I was wondering if there were no difference or if someone failed.
I would think the word "at" is implied and not required to be written (or said). I never ask: At what speed are you going? Nor would I ever ask: What speed are you going at? In many other sentences Duo has started with "A" and it was not required to be translated/written out. Thoughts?
If the answer to the question requires a preposition (if it's a complete sentence), then the question will need that same preposition. That's the trend that I've seen in Spanish. So if the response is something like "Voy -a- cincuenta kilometros por hora", the question to that has an "a".
"What speed are you going"? is a sensible English translation. I wouldn't include the "at" here. More common in English might be "how fast are you going"? Interesting and appropriate comments regarding the scientific distinction between "speed" and "velocity." Velocity means speed in a given direction (vector quantity) while speed does not include direction (scalar quantity).
That should be a good translation, but Duo is not perfect, and they do not accept all good translations. I would stick to the literal translation "At what speed are you going" or "What speed are you going at". Note that they translate velocidad as speed, while technically speaking those are two different concepts.
Where I'm from it's always simplified to :"How fast are you going". Which is always marked wrong by Duo. Personally I don't know anyone who would use the above mentioned, short of something in some test or scientific experiment. How fast are you going. Any other non-formal answer is Crap! Comments?
You can end a sentence with 'at'. "Where's the money at?" (Although that sentence works just as well without it.) A preposition at the end of a sentence is not the devil. We do it all the time. "Who are you going with?" "Did you put the kettle on?" However, it is extremely awkward in this sentence and, I would argue, unnecessary. It should be deleted or, at least, not required.
To be a purist, the correct English is NOT "what speed are you going AT". It is improper to end a sentence with a proposition, without an object of the proposition to follow. Therefore the correct translations would be "At what speed were you going?" or "What speed were you going?"
Probably just a simple mistake, but I'm sure you meant to say "are" in those final two examples, rather than "were".
Oh, and the only reason terminal prepositions are considered bad is because a struggling 17th-century playwright (Jon Dryden) had an axe to grind, and a bunch of misguided 18th-century lovers of all things Latin decided he was right. English isn't Latin, and never was. Or as Winston Churchill himself famously mocked, "This is the sort of bloody nonsense up with which I will not put."
To blindly say it is okay to end an English sentence with a preposition is wrong. Two examples immediately spring to mind: "Where are you at?" and "Where are you going to?"
That said, there are plenty of sentences where you can do it if you want to :)
I am well educated, and although "At what speed are you going?" is completely proper and acceptable, it sounds a bit contrived. And "What speed are you going at?" sounds unnecessarily clumsy.
I suspect the vast majority of English speakers would simply ask, "How fast are you going?"