Translation:It is a pity that none of you knows what normal coffee is.
The word came into the language masculine. It is acceptable to use it as neuter in spoken language—but still frowned upon by many. A kind of "mistake" everyone knows even if they do not get it right themselves. We use masculine in the course but IRL neuter also has been used for decades.
But такое is neuter, isn't it? Surely it shpuld be either что такой нормальный кофе, or что такое нормальное кофе ...... not some Frankensteinian combination?
Thank you for that very clear explanation of the grammar - it makes sense now - finally.
I'd still like to know the difference between что and что такое.
In other words, does omitting такое from the sentence change the meaning?
такое does not agree with кофе. Another example would be "Что такое хорошая жизнь?"
My personal choice is to use masculine for decent coffee and neuter for coffee in the name only. (This is a bit of an inside joke since Russian words for crap & ❤❤❤❤ are both neuter.) Hence, according to me, in this example it should definitely be masculine ;-)
It's a pity that Duolingo cannot cope with subtle variations in the translation of complex sentences. But we love it even so.
It could, but not necessarily should: "none" can be a short form of both singular "no one" and plural "not any":
A relevant quote:
It is sometimes held that none can only take a singular verb, never a plural verb: none of them is coming tonight rather than none of them are coming tonight. There is little justification, historical or grammatical, for this view. None is descended from Old English nān meaning ‘not one’ and has been used for around a thousand years with both a singular and a plural verb, depending on the context and the emphasis needed
In this case, it is "none of you", so I think the plural is MUCH more likely here.
Also, referring to Jade's comments below, I notice that "it is a pity that none of you know what ordinary coffee is" isn't accepted, and perhaps that is what he/she encountered? I automatically defaulted to translating to "ordinary" over "normal", so it should be accepted.
Because "you" is plural. Another (less grammatical) way to look at this sentence is to say "it is a shame that all of you don't know...". You wouldn't say "all of you doesn't know", and likewise, you wouldn't say "none of you knows".
Also, zero is a plural number (because one is the only singular number and 0≠1). You would say "I have zero apples", not "I has zero apples". You could say this sentence as "zero of you know..." and the same rule would apply.
I disagree. The actual subject is "one": "Not ONE of [all of you many] knows"
Both are acceptable and both are accepted in this exercise, so I am not sure what's here to report.
The sentence "It is a pity that none of you know what normal coffee is" is certainly accepted - I've just checked. So once again, I am not sure what's here to report.
I swear to you I am reading the translation right now and it says "knows" ...I don't know what is going on, but I'm not messing with you. I take my russian language studies seriously and right now I am being serious.
If that happens again, take a screenshot, put it on some free file-sharing server and post a link. Without it we can't help you.
And to show the date and time:
Your screenshot doesn't show that "know" is not accepted, it just shows that "knows" is in the main translation, that's it. You should make the screenshot of the answer not being accepted during the exercise, not a screenshot of the discussion heading (which always has only one main translation).
I've tested know, and it is accepted.
Ok, well that is a new development. Probably since I reported it (ie. "My answer should be accepted because")? I haven't had to do this lesson again since. And at any rate, I complied with the request for a screenshot, simply to comply, not to prove that "know" is not accepted. Gee you guys are so pedantic. Anyway, thanks for the feedback.
Ps. Unfollowing this all-too-helpful discussion as of now. Thanks.
We're not pedantic, we're trying to help in case something is really not working. But if there is nothing wrong then we cannot help. Most often than not users just make a mistake which they don't notice, but think that their "perfectly correct" answer is not accepted. If there is a screenshot it's pretty easy to find the mistake and point it out.
This sentence has a quite lightweight meaning. You are not going to blame anyone who has never tried better coffee, you just feel sorry for current situation. In this kind of meanings the word Жаль is perfect. The analogy of shame in Russian would rather be - стыд, позор. And examples of the sentence be like: Это позор что ты прожил в Италии 2 года и не попробовал настоящего эспрессо. It is a shame that you have lived 2 years in Italy and haven't tried the real espresso.
No, Rob is actually right It's a shame in English actually means the same as Russian Жаль.
Английская идиома It's a shame означает то же, что и русское жаль. Это позор... я бы скорее перевела как Shame on you