So, in addition to 'behind', 'at' and 'for', «за» also means 'outside' and 'over'?
If you think about windows, you realize that you are usually standing inside of a dwelling and on the other side of the window is usually "outside". So outside isn't really a new meaning of за it's just a natural consequence of what is usually on the other side of windows.
Couldn't за also mean 'inside', for example, if there is nothing interesting behind the window of a store? (i.e., you've already spent half of your shirt time in Moscow inside ГУМ, you have still not seen the Kremlin, but your partner doesn't want to leave, even though all shops are closed.)
I thought that этим was the instrumental case declination for это, so I translate as "this window". It was marked wrong, and the text suggested "the window". Now I am condused about it. Can anybody help me here?
i just learned that 'outside' is 'в улице'. To me this is another sentence i cannot translate. There is nothing outside ... you can not see throught the window ... There is nothing inside the box ... I could work with. But: there is nothing outside the window does not make sense to me
You can say that when you look through the window and you don't see anything.
It would be good to see a native speaker/moderator weigh in on this. It certainly seems like the most natural "primary" translation would be "There is nothing behind this window" as there doesn't seem to be anything indicating one is inside looking out as opposed to outside looking in. But then common usage may say otherwise.
I agree the literal translation "... behind this window" should be accepted, but perhaps DL should also accept the more natural English "... through this window". Maybe "outside" is also OK, though that assumes you are inside, so "inside" should also be accepted.
The point of this is not to have all translations... the goal should be that if the user understood the Russian and rendered it into acceptable and reasonably foreseeable English, they shouldn't then be tripped up.
Heresay: i asked a native speaker about this. За has no connotation of 'outside' in the sense of 'улице'. It is an idiosyncracy of the language that you discuss something being 'behind' a window as opposed to through it. За окном снег идёт.