"It is something totally different."
Translation:Es ist was ganz anderes.
Why is "Anderes" capitalized while "etwas" isn't? And for that matter, why is it "etwas", not "etwa" and "Anderes", not "anders"? (I tried "Es ist etwas ganz unterschiedlich.")
This answer is solely about the capitalization. Capitalization in German can be rather tricky.
In this case, a bit of googling gave me this article on indefinite pronouns from Wikipedia.
The article tells me that both "etwas" and "anderes" are indefinite pronouns, and that they are never capitalized... It even lists as an example: "Das ist etwas anderes."
Now, this shows us that maybe this is not the most important thing to learn about German. But let us try to figure out what else the web says about this situation... The Duden talks about "anderes" and never capitalizes it. This article claims that this is a mistake which is even done in newspapers and argues that German should get rid of the capitalization of nouns.
i think the suggestions for "totally" should amount to something more than "vollig." if you're trying to learn, and trying to know the different ways of saying totally, having ganz and komplett would be helpful under the suggestions.
What is the difference between Anderes and anders in this context (in other words, why do we need "different" as a noun rather than as an adjective following 'etwas')?
And "Es ist etwas ganz (oder vollständig oder völlig) Verschiedenes", wouldn't it be correct?
I'm inclined to think that "verschieden" is more like "varied" (several different things, an array) whereas I think of "unterschiedlich" as more simply "different" (one thing from another). Am I wrong? And why are any of these words capitalized--aren't they adjectives, rather than nouns?
You are right, no one would say "Es ist etwas ganz Verschiedenes", "verschieden" does mean different, but in another context. Like siblings can be different or how somethings look. These are the most used options: "Das/Es ist was/etwas ganz/völlig Anderes."
As for the capitalization, in this case those words are nouns. You are right, those words can also be adjectives, like HOW something is. How is it? "Es ist unterschiedlich.", "Es ist anders."
Then there are nouns like "der Unterschied" (the difference), but in this case you refer to something. You don't say HOW it is, you say that it is a thing, an object
"Es ist etwas Unterschiedliches." (It's an ... object) you can't ask "How is it?" "Es ist unterschiedlich." (It's an ... attribute)
No, I'm sorry, but I think you're wrong. The same as in English - ''different'' can never be a noun, and the same goes for unterschiedliches. This is not a noun, not in any context. Yes, the question for this sentence is: What is it? But the answer is not ''different'', but ''something'' - it is something (a noun) and: How is it? - it is different. So, if any word here would have to be capitalized, it would rather be ''etwas'' than ''anderes'' or synonyms... But the correct answer is all letters small! Duolingo makes mistakes too often to believe everything you see here, no matter how wrong it seems. Just as an example, look at the top of this window - you can see that the correct answer here is a typo - Es ist WAS ...!!! So, that's definitely wrong! And like that, all kinds of other ''correct'' answers can be wrong and typo too. But when I notice something, I report it, and usually soon receive Duolingo emails explaining that I was right. You should report your observations, too. That's why that window stands there anyway. And Duolingo's purpose is to exchange knowledge and reduce misleading suggestions. After all, we all benefit from it - we want to learn and remember what is really correct in a chosen language.
Thank you! That is very helpful. Would I use "etwa" instead of "etwas" with an adjective?
No, "etwa" means something different than "etwas", while "etwas" means "something", "etwa" means "perhaps" or "about". Like:
"You perhaps think I'm too fat?!" "Denkst du etwa, ich sei zu dick?"
okay thank you, I thought "verschieden" would work as well, but obviously not. Regarding your question, if I am correct, after "Etwas" and "Nichts", all the adjectives "become nouns" and take the neutral gender. Two exceptions though: "andere" and "solche", they take the neutral gender, but do not "become nouns".
Not entirely true. "andere" and "solche" are no nouns, but there are noun versions of them:
As far as I know there is no noun for "solche", at least none that's often used.
You may be 'right' but the explanation does not make sense to me. The noun in the sentence is 'etwas' while 'anderes' is its qualifying adjective. The sentence should include "Etwas anderes".
The English sentence is in present tense, why is the German sentence in past tense?
bagoly128 - If I'm understanding your question correctly, you are asking the reason why this sentence is in the preterite or past tense? I personally can't seem to find the reference to the "past" in it. It seems like the usual present tense to me, but I'm still curious why you are asking this, maybe I'm not seeing what is obvious.