"¿Qué cosa tienes en tu mochila?"
Translation:What thing do you have in your backpack?
I'm not quite sure what this discussion is about. I believe some previous messages may be gone. However, it it important to point out that the word "pack" is often used for what DL calls "backpack", and what the British call "rucksack."
It's unfortunate that DL does not accept "pack" as a translation for "mochila" . I have reported this more than once.
But Pack means so many other things. A pack of cigarettes, a pack of wolves, a pack of cards. But backpack is much more specific. Rucksack is a word used in American English as well, although it refers more to a longer item with a metal frame for long treks. Backpack is the smaller one which started being used by students and the like in the late sixties, although they were mostly army surplus then.
It is true that "pack" can refer to different things. , But in the US., "pack" is very common for "backpack." And people who backpack don't confuse "pack of cards" or "pack of wolves." (wolf pack) with a backpack. In the context of hiking, "pack" refers to "backpack" and not to "pack of wolves", and most backpackers in the wilderness do not smoke.
"Pack" is also a verb -- one "packs" a bag to travel, or I pack my pack before going backpacking or hiking.
I started actively 'backpacking" with my backpack back in the 70s. I would carry a week or more of food on my back. It was not small. (I also used a smaller pack to carry my books when I was in college.)
"The Complete Backpacker" (by Colin Fletcher) became the "bible" of backpacking in the 70s. It was written for those who wanted to go on extended trips into the backcountry (wilderness). He did many very long backpack trips in the U.S., and wrote several books about his backpacking experiences. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colin_Fletcher
Here are references: https://www.backpacker.com/ (Backpacker Magazine) Look at this Backpacker Magazine website.
See this list of backpacks for sale at a major Outoor store (REI): Note the use of the word "pack" on this REI website: https://www.rei.com/c/hiking-backpacks?r=corigin=webir=category%3Ahiking-backpackspage=1
This store also specializes in backpacking. http://frugalbackpacker.com/
Backpacks come in different sizes. Often, the smaller packs are called "day packs." See this website: http://www.cabelas.com/category/Backpacks-Bags/104758380.uts
This U.S. company's site uses mostly the term "pack", for all sizes of packs. http://blackdiamondequipment.com/en_US/search?cgid=packs Search on this site with the word "rucksack", and it will turn up only "packs", not rucksacks. (although it obviously knows that a rucksack is.) It sells many different kinds of "packs", but apparently nothing they call a "rucksack."
On U.S. store websites, the backpacks are not called "rucksacks". Rucksack is a British term. (and I suppose countries such as Canada, and Australia, and other British Commonwealth countries.) It is also more common in Europe, and the term used by European companies.
"Rucksack" is also a term often used by the military. "Ruck" comes from the German for "back" . In the early 20th century, Germans were leaders in mountaineering.
Here is a review of packs (done by backpackers) https://www.backpacker.com/gear/backpacks
This site reviews packs also. They distinguish "backpack packs" from other packs. http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/topics/camping-and-hiking/best-backpacks-backpacking
Here is a list of U.S. backpacking books at Amazon. (It's not called "rucksacking.") Notice that the backpacks on the covers of the books are mostly large packs, as they are used for multi-day trips in the wilderness. https://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8keywords=backpacking+bookstag=googhydr-20index=apshvadid=181852379910hvpos=1t2hvnetw=shvrand=15131984631548488548hvpone=hvptwo=hvqmt=ehvdev=chvdvcmdl=hvlocint=hvlocphy=9006822hvtargid=kwd-526973061ref=pd_sl_3dovwxf4zs_e_p19
This site on how to choose backpacks calls them both "pack" and "backpack". Those terms are pretty much interchangeable. https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/backpack.html And it is clear that this site is not talking about wolf packs, or cigarette packs.
If only DL would understand this.
Be all that as it may be (and I am aware of the origin of rucksack as a speaker of German) There is nothing in this sentence that suggests that it is about backpacking (which would never be called packing) EXCEPT the word mochila. Many students here rely on Duo for the meaning of words. Since mochila is always a good translation for backpack but often not for pack, preferring a translation that will always be correct is better on Duo which seldom has sufficient context to determine setting or situation.
The word that suggests "pack" or "backpack" is mochila, because Spanish uses the word "mochila" to refer to what we, in the US. (and U.S. manufacturers of "mochilas") call either/both "pack" or "backpack."
The point is that, at least in the U.S., what DL will refer to as "mochila" is a "pack" or a "backpack".
"Pack" is a correct translation of "mochila" . "Backpack" is not the only correct translation of "mochila."
See this Spanish website below: All these are called "packs" in U.S. English, (or backpacks) (except a very few of them are "duffles" .) "Pack" is the standard word, in U.S. English, for what this site calls "mochilas"
Notice: this Spanish website that sells REI packs (packs made by REI, an American company). The company REI calls them "packs". (read the lables on the packs). Spanish uses the word "mochila" to refer to REI's "packs."
https://www.google.es/search?tbm=ischq=mochilachips=q:mochila,online_chips:mochila+basicsa=Xved=0ahUKEwik4vjEw5HXAhWMwYMKHSNPDYkQ4lYIKSgDbiw=1023bih=876dpr=1#imgrc=JHl1R8ZWqgs8YM: This is a "backpack", also called a "pack."
Apparently the Spanish for a "backpacking pack ("backpack", aka "pack" ) is called "mochila de mochilero " or "mochila de campismo.
If I want to distinguish, in English, between types of packs, I can say "backpacking pack" and "day pack." "Day packs" are smaller packs. See this website: https://www.rei.com/c/day-packs?r=corigin=webir=category%3Aday-packspage=1
https://articulo.mercadolibre.com.mx/MLM-544795696-mochila-rei-flash-22-lt-_JM Read the lable that is in English.
Notice that, on this site, all the "daypacks" are called simply "packs;" They are NOT called "backpacks."
If only DL would get that right!
And of course, anyone can do their own research to confirm what I am saying. It's easy to do, because there are so many examples of "packs" on the web. Literally, millions of examples. (22 million for "day pack" https://www.google.com/search?q=day+packrlz=1C1FLDB_enUS563US565oq=day+packaqs=chrome..69i57j0l5.3064j0j8sourceid=chromeie=UTF-8
Here are some more sites to prove my point: -- they are called "packs"
I agree. But I suspect it is a similarly strange sentence in Spanish. It certainly is not a common expression so it doesn't really qualify for a common for common translation. And the problem is without context it is hard to determine what would really be intended. It could well be that it is more like What's that/what sort of thing us that meaning you don't recognize the object or its purpose. But ultimately Duo's purpose is not really to teach you how to translate smoothly or eloquently into English, but rather to both construct and understand Spanish sentences. You will probably never want to construct this sentence, but understanding the elements, you will be able to correctly understand it in context.
I think there needs to be a clarification of Duo's purpose. In these comments, I have heard both arguments. That one must use the correct English phrase and that one must translate more "word for word" to show you understand the Spanish. I have had answers marked wrong due to poor English grammar that did the best to explain the Spanish phrase and equally marked wrong when I wrote the English in best English grammar when it was not a direct translation of the Spanish phrase. I find myself struggling at times to guess which way Duo would like me to translate each answer - best English grammar? or most direct translation? Feels random at times and it would be helpful if they consistently attempted to follow one way.
My experience is that Duo would like us to answer in a natural way. Sometimes it seems as though it's looking for a word-for-word translation, but that's more due to the way it tries to suggest a correct sentence that's similar to what we guessed wrong with. Sometimes that results in near nonsense, so it's best to go into the discussion to see what the official correct answer is.
As long as we don't worry too much about getting a wrong answer sometimes, I think it's best to aim for the most natural way to say something. If the best way to say something is a true paraphrase of the official answer, report that it's not accepted. Often they will add it to the list of accepted answers.
A different American perspective:
It may be "standard" amongst serious hikers...but as a non-hiking American who has lived in multiple different states, I would never use "pack" for "backpack."
Interesting. I don't hike but I habitually say "pack" as short for "backpack". Metro NYC.
I agree... very strongly! In fact, if you dropdown the dropdown you see it also offers 'cosa' as the subjunctive present and imperative forms of 'to sew/to stitch' but would you try that? No! Why? Because it's the least obvious solution and makes the most sense. As FLchick say below, 'what mess' is simply idiomatic
Does the context of this sentence in spanish include the possibility of multiple things, even though it's not expressly stated? It makes a lot more sense to be asking what things or stuff someone has in their backpack. Perhaps that's part of the "what mess" thing. If this is true, then "what stuff do you have in your backpack should be accepted.
‘¿Qué cosa tienes en tu mochila?’ is asking for the identification of what appears to be a single object, although it might turn out to be more than one object, and there could certainly be other objects in the backpack that aren't arousing the questioner's curiosity. It's what you would ask if it looks like there's a strange object in the backpack —maybe there's something unrecognizable protruding from it, or some unidentified gizmo shows up in a security scanner. An idiomatic English translation is “What's that thing in your backpack?”. But just as “What thing is in your backpack?” sounds awkward in English, ‘¿Qué es esa cosa en tu mochila?’ sounds awkward in Spanish.
it's not "bad english" it's just a phrase that no one would ever use. it is more likely to ask "what things are" in your backpack.
an example of a context in which this phrase might be appropriate:
guy 1: i have a thing in my backpack. guy 2: what thing do you have in your backpack?
the exercise is designed to help us practice the word "cosa", not just "que tienes". i agree it is a clumsy weird phrase to use but sometimes i think the examples are ridiculous on purpose to make us pay extra attention to things like sentence structure and appropriate translation.
Because that's the way they say it in spanish. If they translated it word for word it would be more confusing because it would have no meaning for us. What thing! We don't say that so they tell us it means what a mess or something that makes sense to us. But it does make it hard when we can see the words don't mean that. However, when you get more fluent you do know what the words really mean and can see the correlation. Sorry for the long post
i hovered over the words and found it said 'what a situation'. i was confused but i knew that other times when i typed in exactly what it SAID it meant was untrue. so I just guessed 'what do you have in your backpack' and luckily it was right. other times i have not been so fortunate.