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"What are the cities in Mexico like?"

Translation:¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?

June 1, 2018

78 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lambisqueiro

what is/ are... like ? = ¿Cómo es/ son...? ( Character, description...)

What is your girlfriend? ¿ Cuál es tu novia?

Cómo? Question marks, with accent mark

(As a verb)Yo como- I eat

(As a adverb, in comparation) Ella es como mi Hermana / She is like my sister


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/spiceyokooko

You have to love Spanish don't you? They put words in that aren't there and take words out that are!

I can understand your confusion, the sentence translates to:

What the cities of Mexico? There's no 'like' in there anywhere!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Thylacaleo

Yes, sometimes confusion reigns supreme!

However, to me the '¿Cómo ...?' in this question suggested How ...? rather than What ...?.

That then makes the sentence more likely to be translated as 'How are the cities of/in Mexico?' which, deducing context, gives the familiar English meaning 'What are the cities in Mexico like?'

At least that's how I saw it! Luckily it was correct! =D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JayWil983441

Yes interesting isnt it??? My understanding is ¿Cómo...? translates into How? or What? depending on the context. In this case How? fits better but in you were saying ¿Cómo estás? which is How are you? then the How? translation fits. I think similar to English some words in spanish have more than one meaning or at least that how I like to think about it x


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JayWil983441

Sorry I meant the How? translation fits in both of the above cases.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/slanguagefreak

actually, 'Cómo' means 'like what'. It is not Spanish's fault that English uses two words for it. Many languages use one word for things English uses more than one word for.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

"Cómo" means "how". The sentence ¿Cómo son las ciudades de México? is literally "How are the cities of Mexico?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctor-John

Literal translations are not always accurate, but in this case, "How are the cities of Mexico?" and "¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?" are perfectly fine translations of each other. "What are the cities of Mexico like?" is new speak (the way millennials and younger talk) for "How are the cities of Mexico?" Of course, from a mellinnial's point of view, you could say "How are the cities of Mexico?" is old speak for "What are the cities of Mexico like?"

In new speak "like" doesn't actually mean "like" in the sense of "apples are like oranges" or "I like Duolingo." In new speak asking what something is like is not actually asking for a comparison. Unfortunately, elsewhere Duolingo does not accept "How are the cities of Mexico?" as a correct translation for "¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?" Only the new speak translation is accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

I'm 45. "What is X like?" is not new.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doctor-John

@Rae.F You're taking me too literally. "Old speak" and "new speak" are figures of speech, used somewhat tongue in cheek. More literal labels would be "older speech" and "newer speech."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lambisqueiro

Yes, I do. The reverse course is very interesting. I had rectified my question without knowing that someone had answered me. In other hand, I do not understand what is the translation into Spanish for this sentence: What the cities of Mexico? Thanks


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/slanguagefreak

'que las ciudades de mexico' I believe. But that sentences does not make sense in either language.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pjmudd82

co'mo according to "SpanishDict.com" = how, why, what, sorry,to say again. Then w/o the accent even more meanings for these four little letters - (REALLY)!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Walter833699

When they want you to repeat what you said, my Colombian friends say "cómo ?", not "qué ?" while in English we use "what ?".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mrk176908

My answer was "en México" instead of "de México". Can someone explain what is the problem with my answer?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Thylacaleo

My answer (¿Cómo son las ciudades en México?) was accepted today 23/09/2018


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/danindenver

"Cómo está las ciudades en Mexico" was marked wrong Sep. 2, 2019


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

"Las ciudades" is plural. It would need to be "cómo están".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MFBeatnik

It's not temporary, do están does not fit


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Julie143204

I think you want to use "son" here though because you're basically asking about a city's character or characteristics. I'm guessing the answers to the question would most likely also use the verb "son" more so than "estan" ... might be a way to help decide which one works best for a given question.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dodoyce

I thought cómo is how? If cómo is also "what," what's its difference from cuál and qué? Thank you for clarification!!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

"Cómo" is "how". In Spanish, they ask how is it like. But we translate with "what" because in English we ask what is it like.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Julie143204

Makes sense, thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

I just realized I made an error in my answer before. They don't say "How is it like", just the way we don't say "how is it like". They say "how is it", the way we say "how is it".

¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?
Literally: How are the cities of Mexico?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@Rae.F

Excuse me for choosing to reply to your post. I just wanted to choose somebody on this page to disagree with.

quote:
¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?
Literally: How are the cities of Mexico?
unquote

No, your translation is incorrect edit ... unless you were to include an explanation about why your literal translation is in conflict with the correct translation. You are wrong because you are feeding the confusion that we see on this web page and the web page of the reciprocal Duolingo exercise. I cannot say whether you might actually understand the issue. But your post implies that you don't understand the explanation for why "How are the cities of Mexico? is the wrong translation of the reciprocal Duolingo exercise.

As a result of your omission, you appear to be just like a number of other students who have posted their misunderstandings about ¿Cómo son ....?

The solution to this Duolingo exercise is perfectly correct. But there are a large number of mistaken students who are casting votes on this web page. Meanwhile, the students who accept the official Duolingo solution are not very interested in this forum web page. We are not disgruntled or otherwise dissatisfied. Forum web pages sometimes serve the people who are mistaken more than they serve the people who truly understand.

Everyone on this web page is welcome to downvote my post if it makes you feel better. You are welcome to consider anybody who disagrees with you as someone to treat frivolously, lightly, casually, or in a cavalier fashion.

Anyone who is interested in my explanations can find them on the web page of the reciprocal Duolingo exercise: ¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

I never said "What are the cities in Mexico like?" is a bad translation of "¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?" We do indeed say things like "What are the cities in Mexico like?" in English.

What I said, what you quoted, was the literal word-for-word of the Spanish, and I would love to see some citations that back up your claim that "How are the cities of Mexico?" is not the literal word-for-word translation of "¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HarryKing565112

just read it as "how". it still makes sense.
como son las ciudades de mexico? how are the cities of mexico(direct translation)=what are the cities in mexico like?(if you want to use "what" in place of "how"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/slanguagefreak

Cómo means "like what which is the same thing as how" You could say How are the cities in Mexico. And that would be easier to understand. However in English that is not the most proper way to say the sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Salazarman

I wrote ¿Qué tal son las ciudades en México? and I got it right, but another acceptable answer was,"Cómo son las ciudades de México?" So are both answers acceptable in real life?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fillmoe

This was a new construction for me. I'm glad they presented it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KariRyan22

I thought Que is what, not Como?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

¿Cómo son las ciudades de México? is literally "How are the cities of Mexico?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RussellPhi1

I just had "en México" marked wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jancomos

Marked right for mr 6/12/19


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LaRataBlanca

I find this interesting, because in English there is a nuance of difference between What are the cities of Mexico like? and How are the cities of Mexico? The first has to do with the description of the cities (are they large, they crowded, etc.), and the second has more the meaning of how do you find them? or what is your opinion about them.?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alice48202

So they don't allow Como estan... because it is a permanent description of quality? What is you say NYC is awful and I say it's great??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Julie143204

And my first reaction to the wording, "How are the cities of Mexico?", would be assume the speaker is asking how the cities are doing.. inquiring into their welfare. So now I am wondering how to ask, for example, how a friend is faring without it coming across as though I am asking whether or not the person enjoys his/her company?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

¿Cómo se siente tu amigo?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fullstrum

I don't get it, this seems to be saying "What are the cities in Mexico", not "what are the cities in Mexico like". If someone asked me this i would expect to have to start listing of cuties in Mexico.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

No, it's literally "How are the cities of Mexico?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JohnnySiciliano

I agree with you fullstrum. I would never had imagined a sentence like that in English without getting an explanation of what the cities of Mexico were like?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jean449589

So if I put que son - what are - that should be correct also?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/frodojj

Why do they use ser instead of estar?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ifny

Great image Rae.F! I need that on my wall stat :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/danindenver

So why are they not referring to the Condition of the cities? If it is my first trip to a country, that might be my biggest concern. Also, what would be the answer to this question?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ktfawcett1

Of course! Confusing, but then in English if we ask the question "What is the spaghetti like?" we mean "How is the spaghetti" Como/how makes sense now.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TwilaDicke

This is the 1st time this has ever happened with Duolingo. The sentence I wrote is EXACTLY the same as the sentence DL gives. I compared each of my words 2 theirs at least 5x.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ponkabonk

What about "Qué parece son las ciudades de méxico"? Seems like that should work.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AaronEaton5

Ok so como is saying how are the cities of Mexico but in English we would phrase it what are they like. You have to think of Spanish to English or vice versa in terms of not only conjugation but also phrasing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Veronica175749

This one is confusing me, but I will work through it as I progress.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AshayDwivedi

"Comment sont les villes de la Mexique?"

I feel that I can relate to French


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GailKavana1

I spelled Mexico with a small letter (m) and was given "another correct way"... with a capital M. I used the small m because that has been used so far in my lessons. Why now suggest a capital "M"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

Hard to say. The correction algorithm is idiosyncratic and nothing the course contributors have any control over--that would be the devs.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Trholter

Why not cuales son las ciudads de Mexico como


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

Because Spanish is not a relex of English. What you said was essentially a word salad in Spanish.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

What you said is literally "which are the cities of Mexico how".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shen255760

Why not "como son ellas las ciudades..."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cmbneeley

I was checking the "hints" from the underlined words, and all the words made sense except "like" at the end said it should be translated "gustamos" (a ellos gustamos), but there is no word for it in the options given. What happened to this word?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@Cmbneeley

I think you are describing an error ... ...because the English word, "like," can be translated into Spanish in a wide variety of ways. And your post appears to be explaining to us that the only Spanish hover hints that are currently included for this particular English word is the Spanish word, gustamos. More Spanish words should be included in the hover hints of this exercise. They are missing.

Allow me to review and paraphrase your topic of discussion. While in a lesson, words (in the target language) will be marked with a dotted line. Tap on that word, and it will offer hover hints. Note: Whenever you are testing out of a skill (skill set), you will not be presented with any of these hover hints.


Allow me to digress. Some students confuse the term, hover hints, with Duolingo tips that are available for some of the skill sets in the tree. Reading the tips page, if it is available, can be very helpful because the tips page is usually well written and it is relevant to many of the lessons in that particular skill set. Begin by tapping on the icon for whichever skill (skill set) you are interested in. Then tap the light bulb icon.


Okay Cmbneeley, I don't want to misinterpret you or make the wrong assumption. So I must ask you if your post is describing a problem with the hover hints for this particular exercise that we are discussing here on this forum web page? If so, then the issue will not be corrected until one of the Duolingo students submits a report. The window of opportunity to submit a report is small. Reports can only be submitted at the same time that the student is doing the exercise that needs to be reported. Click (or tap) on the following web link to read more about the submission of reports.

How do I report a problem with a sentence or translation?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cmbneeley

Ok, so i didn't know the terminology for hover hint. Disculpe!

When i clicked the hover hint for the word "like" in the sentance "what are the cities in Mexico like?" It had 3 drop down options, all of them variations including the word "gustamos". My exercise gave the English sentance and a bunch of spanish words in blocks to click that would arrange them in a translated sentance. None of the spanish words in clickable blocks (forgive me, I'm sure there's an actual term for those, but i dont know it, much like 'hover hint') included a word or form of the word gustamos.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PhillipMcN2

@Cmbneeley

I understand. Thank you for the information. It is considered normal that none of the available tiles included "gustamos" or another form of "gustar". Not every hover hint is required to be relevant for each particular exercise. So in this case (in this exercise), we need not be surprised that Gustar is irrelevant to this Duolingo exercise.

However, the other aspect of the problem, that I described in my preceding post, will need to be reported by one of the students. I.E. More Spanish words should be included in the hover hints of this exercise. They are missing.


By the way, I call those things, that you were talking about, tiles. And some of the other people in the forum are also calling them tiles.

Tile - based game


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Yeta206416

'What ~ like' is 'How'. So how are the cities in mexico = Cómo son las ciudades de México. Right??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

We can say it both ways in English.
"How is Mexico?"
"How are the cities in Mexico?"
"What is Mexico like?"
"What are the cities in Mexico like?"
They mean the same thing.

In Spanish, they only say "How is/are...?"
"¿Cómo es México?"
"¿Cómo son las ciudades de Mexico?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CharlieTre17

Why is this also not correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

Because "this" is "este". A better translation of "¿Cómo son las ciudades de México?" would be "What are the cities in Mexico like?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pjmudd82

"gusta " would be better for "like" Co'mo has too many uses - how, what, why to say again


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/coroz2

Please correct your English grammar to NOT end a sentence with a preposition. LIKE is a preposition. Instead, the English sentence should read, How do you find the cities in Mexico? or What is your opinion of the cities in Mexico?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

It is not wrong to end a sentence with a preposition.

"What is it like?" is an extremely common way of asking about something. Your suggestions are needlessly complicated.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Julie143204

Coroz2, Oxford Dictionary disagrees with you regarding ending a sentence with the preposition "like". The authors end one of their example sentences with "...is she like?". Today, this usage is perfectly acceptable. Since Duo is assisting people with learning how to communicate with other people - today - it only makes sense they should follow today's language usage rules.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

It was never wrong to end a sentence with a preposition. That myth comes from an attempt to artificially impose a rule, and language does not operate by decree.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TwilaDicke

It is not considered proper form to end a sentence with a preposition IF it can be avoided--for example, "where are my shoes at" would benefit from leaving off the unneeded preposition at the end. The sentence "where are you going to?" is in a similiar boat. It all boils down to the register of the sentence. If it's colloquial speech, leaving the preposition at the end would be OK, but if it's a more formal speech or document, avoid ending a sentence with a preposition.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rae.F
  • 2193

In "Where are my shoes at" or "Where are you going to", the issue is one of redundancy, not of placement.

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