The steeple ---> el campanario. Tower ---> la torre. Campanario usually refers to a church steeple or bell tower (from campana (bell)) whereas torre refers to a building such as the Sears tower in Chicago. I can't tell you why DL accepted las torres as the steeples. I've never seen torres translated to mean a steeple such as found on a church. Torre can also be used to describe a tower of things like a tower of bricks or wood or an electrical tower.
Lack of context can often be one of the largest obstacles to language learning. If ''the towers'' was used within a sentence or better yet a paragraph it would be easier to know which word to use.
Agreed re context, but with a lack of it DL should accept all possibly answers. SpanishDict offers el campanario, la torre, and la aguja for steeple http://www.spanishdict.com/translate/steeple Maybe it is a regional thing, and whoever programmed the "la torre"="the steeple" question (complete with steeple picture), uses the word differently from whoever programmed the "las torres"<>"the steeples" question :)
I don't think anyone actually ''programs'' the sentences. If I understand it correctly, DL uses algorithms against word lists, phrase lists, parts of speech, sentence structure, etc. to produce the actual exercises. That's why some, if not many, of the exercises don't really make much sense and aren't something people would use in everyday speech. I believe that I read somewhere, that it is intentional. Nonetheless, DL is a good starting place for language learning. If you take the reverse course (Spanish speaker learning English) you will get a more authentic feel for Spanish.
Perhaps your solution will be added to the list of accepted solutions. I had 2 answers added just this week! Good luck with your Spanish studies!
Cheryl, thanks for your comment. Yes you read somewhere about the algorithms, but I think it was in comments right here. I have never found this in official DL information. I too am taking the reverse course and am leaning a ton of Spanish... and English grammar too. I am also leaning that hispanohablantes fight more over Spanish grammar than the ingleshablantes do, at least that is my perception. Hasta luego.
Thanks Cheryl, I was aware of the algorithm theory, but I don't know how heavily DL relies on them in reality. If any moderators are reading it would be interesting to know. What I was really meaning was whoever programmed the answers to the questions may have had different opinions (as I know through moderators' comments that answers must be manually added). I was only joking at the time, but reading Melita's comment about hispanohablantes fighting over their language usage it may not be so far from the truth.
Likewise, though "las" sort of put paid to the idea of bulls! :) I have a tough time with "torre" simply because it looks like it should be masculine, but isn't. Although English language doesn't have fem./masc. attributions like French or Spanish, there is a cultural tradition of thinking of menhirs and other tall, standing, stone things as masculine/phallic symbols - but! - both column and tower, in Spanish, are feminine nouns. The other one that trips me constantly is the notion that an "egg" is masculine... oi.
I remember that from early in the basic lessons: "El huevo?" Seriously, if ever a word should be feminine :) The guy on the Language Transfer course (highly recommended) explains this as the word being masculine or feminine, not the thing it describes. Unfortunately, just to confuse things, we then get the -a -o variations describing the gender of the thing not the word. And then, to really confuse matters, some words for animals are undifferentiated, meaning again it is the word that is masculine or feminine not the animal. So a male giraffe is a "jirafa," while a female dinosaur is a "dinosaurio." To add to this confusion, some dictionaries list certain animal names as undifferentiated, while others say they are differentiated, and possibly these differences are changing as the language changes. Want more confusion? A "caballo" is a male horse, a "yegua" is a female horse, but a "caballa" is a mackerel of either gender (if mackerels have gender). Let's confuse things more. A gorilla of either sex is a "gorila," but "gorila" is a masculine noun. Why stop here. A burro can be a donkey of either sex, but if you want to call someone a donkey, then you would have to use the -o -a endings to match the person's gender. Here's another. Adjectives match the gender of undifferentiated animal names, so let's take Bob, a male giraffe: "The giraffe is pretty"= "La jirafa es bonita." But if we use his given name then the adjective must match his gender: "Bob, la jirafa, es bonito." I'm sure there are mistakes above, how couldn't there be, but I'm giving myself a headache so I'll stop.