Studying a language using a program like Duolingo is great because full sentences give context to individual vocabulary words.
But only if the sentences make sense.
In what possible scenario would someone say "Is this the present"?
I think we need to remember that duo is always limited by the vocabulary we have learnt so far. So there are often unusual or strange sentences.
No it just means is it/this the present? For example you might be reading a book in which there are two timelines, one set 100 years in the past and one set in the present day and you're not sure which one you're reading about at that moment in time.