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  5. "I do not know what I want to…

"I do not know what I want to do now."

Translation:Tôi không biết tôi muốn làm gì bây giờ.

July 3, 2016



Really having trouble understanding the difference between bây giờ and hiện tại


Why can't you use "hiện tại" here?

When you try to use 'hiện tại", why does it then say that 'làm việc' is part of the answer instead of just 'làm'? The English is 'do', not 'work'.


My wife says that hien tai it doesn't sound natural here. It is better Bay gio. Also she told me Bay gio is now, but hien tai is currently.


This is one of the most frustrating exercises I've ever had!!! Everything I try which sounds reasonable is rejected:

A. tôi không biết gì tôi muốn làm bây giờ -- Google says is right, Duolingo says wrong

B. tôi không biết gì tôi muốn làm hiện tại --- Google says is right, Duolingo says is wrong

C. Hiện tại tôi không biết tôi muốn làm gì -- Google says is right, Duolingo says is wrong.

I realize google is not always right, but I will run this by my native Vietnamese speaker friends. But I've already used 'bây giờ' speaking with them, and in most cases they tell me that I said it right. In these Duolingo exercises I try not to robotically give the same memorized answers, to keep my vocabulary fresh, I try to construct the sentences different ways and use different vocabulary. To me it's better to devise different constructions to actually learn the language, and it's very frustrating when only one construction is accepted as 'correct'.


Sentences like this stop my motivation cold. I just copy and paste the answer while angrily muttering so I don't get hung up. I have no problem with learning complex structures, but gotchas without explanations are rage quit worthy (at the moment). It would be great if more controversial/difficult sentences had an official explanation so we could build forward instead of memorizing a sentence we'd never use.


I fully agree. I have been known to scream at the computer in frustration, and I'm not normally an easily-upset person. The stupid DL owl 'encouraging' you to try harder when you make a mistake that really wasn't a mistake adds insult to injury.


"I do not know I want to do what now"! Is this really the sentence structure used by Vietnamese people. Any of those above (A,B,C) makes much more sense.


Thank you so much Stewart. I am feeling the same way with this app. My first guess was yours also. These "gotcha" type moments with DL are just complete garbage and have made me want to uninstall this app many times. I wish they just charged everyone and did away with the hearts element, because I feel that would eliminate all this sneaky nonsense on DL's part if everyone just payed a flat rate and had infinite life. There would be no incentive for them to throw these curve balls everywhere to kill off people with the free accounts.


Why can't it be:

"Hiện tại tôi không biết cái gì tôi muốn làm"....?


If this one frustrates you, imagine how a native Vietnamese speaker must feel in America.

"So, me and Tyler were like, going to the club, right? And then Jeff like, totally hits on Amy right in front of us! So rude!"

Would any of that make a speck of sense to a non-native speaker? And our idioms! "What - cat got your tongue? Pardon my French, but that's just how i speak when im under the weather."

And we are the ones complaining.


Have you heard this being taught as English.


I agree with many comments below. However, one comment motivates response. DL 'is' free, for which I'm eternally grateful. Having spent many years in Vietnam one comes to understand that in Vietnemese, as in other languages, there are multiple ways of saying things. Some aspects of the DL program certainly need updating and I agree it's frustrating to be held up by pre-programmed responses that don't have the capacity to delineate between meaning, placement of words and alternative vocab. Perhaps sometime in the near future, replies as below will be used to fine tune what I think is an commendable service to international communications.


Is it ok to put the bây giờ in the front instead of the back?


It is ok to put the phrase in the front but I recommend sticking to the original sentence's structure.


Can you add Tôi không biết mình muốn làm gì bây giờ as a correct solution please? Because it is.


Tôi không biết mình muốn làm gì bây giờ.thế mà bảo sai


Tôi không biết mình muốn làm gì bây giờ. still refused by 2020, 16th nov.


Why does the correct translation have gì after tôi muốn làm? The literal word for word translation would be "I do not know I want to what do now".


Not sure if this helps, but "làm gì" pretty much translates to "do (something)". You, the speaker, are bored and you wanna do "something". It's not a direct translation but the context is the same. The word "làm" can mean "do/make", but has different contexts depending on what other words complement it. Đi làm = go to work, làm viềc = to work (labour or a job), làm đo ăn = make food, etc. "Bạn đang làm gì?" = "What are you doing/making?". As in, what thing (gì) are you doing/making? So if you're being generic with what you are doing, it has to have that gì. That's just how Vietnamese structures its sentences. I hope that gives some clarity? Perhaps a native speaker has better take on exactly why?


Because the meaning is slightly different:

Now, I don't know what to do.


I don't know what to do now.


This sentence has such a beautiful melodic rhythm.


I am assuming there are different ways to say many things - same as English - I put it into Google translate and get the same answer....but explanatory notes or more information about the use of words is sometimes required: and this sentence is one that definitely requires explanation (if there is one of course).


why not the "vao" bay gio? I have the same answer as above, except "vao bay gio" rather than just "bay gio," which is what we've been using in the other answers in this set, but it is not accepted for this sentence. I'm confused.


So the "what" is just implied then???


Yes, because "cái gì" essentially means "what". In this case, "làm gì" basically means "what to do". It helps to know that "làm" = "do/make" too. I hope that helps!


thank you Sylvia. I guess I am just getting back to this exercise set the second time around, seeing your reply! "Better late than never!" ;-)

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