I have been trying to learn spanish for free and so I have been piecing together free options (like DL, coffee break spanish podcast, etc.) for a while. What I have learned is that there are so many different spanish speaking regions that there is a huge variety in what is spoken.
A classic case is the word coger, which in Spain is used all the time for "to take", while in other parts of the world (Mexico, I think), it is closer in meaning to the F-bomb.
If you look on spanishdict, you see both are used. Not it may be that ver is used more often in the spanish world, but not always.
So the statements by Bishop6 and FrankJnlan seem too strong (with the latter being a bit condescending).
Point well taken Gmeym! We see a lot of arguments here in the forums about Duolingo not accepting common English phrasing from Australia or the UK or the southern US and so on, that it's surprising we are not more cognizant of how Spanish has a multitude of regional variations as well. And I can be guilty of that too, though I usually try to clarify that it's my experience (primarily) in Mexico that colors my Spanish usage.
The critical word here is 'view'.
Veo la tele - I view the TV. or I am viewing the TV.
Miro la pintura. - I look at the painting. or I am looking at the painting.
Ver - seeing, viewing, (perceive action)
Mirar - to look at an object, observe the actions of a person.
Apparently both are used in Argentina for TV, movies. (Ver/Mirar)
In English we watch TV, and look at a painting. Maybe we look at a TV (for dust?) or watch a painting (that moves?)
Fortunately, DUO accepted my "watching the TV...." Although the "the" isn't always necessary, the "the" is necessary if one is referring to a specific TV, in this case, the one in the kitchen.
However, we don't have context to know whether the "the" is needed. Thus, Duo accepts both translations.
See the example that Lonzcat, above , gives that illustrates my point.
The present tense in Spanish can translate as either simple present OR present progressive in English. The use of present progressive in Spanish is much narrower than in English -- English uses it more freely to refer to near future events ("I am performing in London next Saturday") or over a longer period of time ("I am studying Spanish this summer"). There's not a one-to-one correspondence between the two tenses in English and Spanish.
Here's something interesting: Google translate says, "I watch t.v." => "Veo la televisión" "I am watching t.v." => "Estoy mirando la televisión."
I'm not suggesting the verb tense matters but rather it seems whoever made the translations used their own personal preference to define the words or something. Not even Google is consistent here. From what I understand, depending on your region you can "see" (ver) or "look/watch" (mirar) television.
in the previous level on this module " mirar la television" was marked incorrect but here it is given to translate. There is a long discussion justifying why either way is correct (i.e.mirar television or mirar la television). It simply seems that Duolingo has made an error as both are used.
What I am having trouble with is using miro here instead of estoy mirando. I had just gotten used to seeing miro instead of the gerund to also mean "am doing something" with the explanation that always seemed to follow that you only needed the gerund to refer to things you are literally in the midst of doing at that moment. And here, it seems to call for the gerund. Would both be acceptable? And by that I mean is it something a native speaker wouldn't even notice as odd. And if not, what is the real explanation for when to use the -ando / gerund form of the verb? Thanks!
Both would be acceptable here. The Spanish progressive form has just a very narrow application: additionally to only using it if the action is currently progressing, it also has to be important to you that the action is progressing. There is never a situation in which you must use the "estar + gerundio" form, but you'll only use it when you're focussing on the progress.
Seems to me that translation is not just about the meaning. It should also consider the words being used. In this case, translating television as TV should be incorrect. Tele is the contraction in Spanish and should be the preferred answer.
I am curious to know if TV has made its way into the Spanish speaking world.
The use of Progressive forms in English doesn't match that of the Progressive forms in Spanish. The important part is that the Spanish Progressive forms are completely optional and only used for emphasis.
That means that Spanish only uses the "estar + gerundio" form if the event is in progress at the time, and if it's important for some reason that it is in progress.
- Estoy mirando la tele en la cocina. - I am in the middle of watching TV in the kitchen.
You are not being picky, the "the" is optional in English but "la" is required in Spanish. I'm the one being picky, television is not equal to TV. It is never OK to translate a word using a contraction. A translation should remain true to the original statement if possible. Duo needs to try harder.
Carlos, those two expressions mean something different:
watching TV in the kitchen - committing the act of watching TV while in a certain location
watching the TV in the kitchen - looking at the TV device that is located in the kitchen
Both versions are okay, but the latter sounds strange to me.