"Is the train not here yet?"


June 18, 2017

This discussion is locked.


Since there is no negative, shouldn't this be "Is the train here yet?"


There is also no "here". We should not translate sentences literally.


But other times Duo is stridently literal... I agree with you but the app is very inconsistent


I think it must be inconsistent with literal and analogous translations because sometimes literal translations don't make any sence / are not the right translation, sometimes only the literal translation shows us how the language works. Unfortunately i cannot think of examples right now..


Yeah that's the problem with the app. We as a community rely heavily on one another to get a more in depth explanation of what we learn here.

Duolingo needs to really come up with something where the exercises do what we are doing on the discussion boards. The tips and hints can only explain so much that it seems I tend to go search on my own to get a better answer as to why.

Without the explanations we provide here, we are basically just memorizing patterns rather than learning why it is how it is. This is good app but man does it suck when I have to constantly stop mid lesson and do my own research.


Well, you should also not translate sentences as you please either, you should try to be as close as possible to what's being said. The original comment regarding the unnecessary use of a negative translation is completely on point.


まだ can mean "not yet" per Jisho though. it's not an unnecessary use, it's a nuance of まだ being taught.


I believe まだ is negative by itself.


Mada is more like an adverb, isn't it? I have usually seen it translated as yet or already, as it is here. I see no negating of the verb, Maybe another way to ask this is if the sentence here means "Is the train not here yet," then how would one ask "Is the train here yet?"


As Carl said, まだ in itself is "not yet". "Already" would be もう. The trick with the latter is that its English equivalent changes when it's a question vs a statement. E.g. もう来ましたか could be translated as "has it come yet?" whereas もう来ました would be "it came already".


Interesting, then how does "まだ若い" translate into "still young" instead of something more confusing like "not yet young"?


Look up "contranyms". In my head, i translate this sentence as roughly "Is the train still ... ?" Obviously I'm no expert, but i think this may actually be a manifestation of dropping clearly understood things. I.e. clearly we can all see if the train is here or not. Again i could be totally off base.


Yeah, you're right. I have to agree that the example here sounds a bit strange, but mada can actually also be used as a noun to mean incomplete or not yet finished.


Like an incomplete thing? I quite like that.


Usually まだ would be used together with a negative verb to mean "not yet", though the word on its own has a little of that sense built in, as does 未 which is the Chinese character you'd rarely see it written with. I'm not all that happy with the suggested translation here either though - given how picky the machine is.


It might be worth pointing out that there's actually no verb here to be negated. まだ isn't a verb, and です just makes the question polite. If you were speaking plainly, you could leave it out here.


Desu is also a verb.


My native Japanese friend explained that in this sentance, "mada" is the negative. It can mean "not yet", as it does here.


I don't see a here.


Yeah, the translation isn't word for word.

電車 train は topic/scope of discussion particle まだ as yet (has a bit of sense of "not yet" as it's usually used with a negative verb, but there's no verb here) です politeness particle か question particle

Japanese leaves a lot of things implicit.


です is the verb. It is not merely a "politeness particle", it is a contraction of "であります" and functions as a copula in modern Japanese. "まだ" implies something is yet to be completed; in this context, the arrival of the train. "電車はまだですか" = "Has the train (not) arrived yet?", "Is the train (not) here yet?"





Didn't work either.


This showed up in the People lesson for me. Is this an error?


I think it's because part of the People lesson is about learning to use まだ, and this is showing another way it can be used.


Why this sentence showed up in the People lesson ?? Is this an error?


Do you know how many people you run into at those train stations??


It looks to me as if the Hindi program has been put out in a bit of a rush, so the later lessons appear to combine several subjects under one title (this was probably originally "travel"). I am endlessly grateful to the contributors for having put out this course, but I do hope they will expand it in the future.


Could this also be "is the train still here?"


I tapped in 電車はまだ and then the gave up in despair, and pressed CHECK to reveal the correct answer, and it accepted it!


I dont like this sentence :(


来ました is missing from the sentence


It's not really 'missing' here, since it's idiomatic. Also, if you wanted to include a form of 来る(くる) it would either have to be 来(こ)なかった or 来(き)ませんでした, since this construction requires a negative.


can younot start a question with "mada"? where all can you put it?


You can put it at the start if you take out the topic/object (making it an implied topic/object).

Something like: まだですか? would translate to something like 'Still?' as in the contracted versions of 'Are we still not there yet?' (destinationは) まだですか?or if you want to keep a little more context: 'Have you still not dress/changed?' (服「ふく」は)まだ着てないですか?/ (nameは)まだ(服「ふく」を)着替え「きがえ」なかったですか?The ( ) can be removed and the sentence will still make sense.


In what strange universe is that sentence not equivalent to "Isn't the train here yet?" And yet not accepted...


would it be completely wrong to say something like 電車はまだここにいませんか? I'm wondering whether a native would still understand what I'm trying to say. Im pretty sure there will be situations where I have to improvise as not all sentences I need will be covered by Duolingo :)


電車 is not alive, so it would be ありません I guess. This is how I responded when I saw this sentence first. And I wonder myself how correct it is if somebody could comment.


I'm so tired of this BS...


With regards to the train: STILL?!


In this case, "mada" means "not yet" instead of "still".


Is there an English translation that more closely resembles the Japanese phrasing rather than trying to sound natural in English? Something like "Train, not yet?" Trying to understand how this sentence structure actually works.


"As for the train, isn't it here yet?" I really do think that the syntax of these languages is so different that there is a real connection between literalness and awkwardness in translation.


Sorry, I don't think I explained well. I actually want to know the more literal (and likely awkward) translation so I can better understand how the individual words are used. I think this would better help me understand how we arrive at the more "natural" english translation, inferring the train's status and location simply from "まだ".


I don't think this sentence is out of place for the people section.

まだ is a new vocab word in this section and Duo is conveying that it has more than just a 1:1 translation with English of 'yet' or 'still'. This sentence specifically teaches that this sentence isn't "Is the train still here?" which is very important context.

It's not a fault of Duo that there isn't a perfect translation for this; if anything this should encourage learners to go out and look for more detailed explanations of what まだ is.


Does the train still exist?

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