True. Questions are made by changing the order between verb and subject. Det finns … = 'There is …' and Finns det …? = 'Is there …?'
Finns det in Swedish means Is there in English. The definite form of kaffe would be kaffet.
Not in questions like this one. This det is a formal subject so it does not change with the noun, it's like it in 'It's raining', it's just there as a placeholder.
So if you ask if there is any food, which is an en word, it would still be Finns det (någon) mat 'Is there (any) food'.
In other contexts, den/det may be a pronoun instead of a formal subject, and in those cases it changes with the noun. Like, Var är kaffet? Finns det här? ('Where is the coffee? Is it here?') vs Var är maten? Finns den här? ('Where is the food? Is it here?'). I think this matches the difference between is there and is it in English pretty well, so it shouldn't be difficult for you if you already know English.
So I'm using Rosetta Stone in conjunction with Duolingo. In RS it introduced "there is" as "Det här är X" as opposed to "Det finns X".
How do the two differ, and what connotations does each one carry?
Hm, Det här är … should be translated as This is …, and I'd still say that There is/are … means Det finns ….
Det där är … would be That is …
That makes sense. Rosetta Stone doesn't actually ever provide any English translations, it just tries to convey meaning with pictures alone, so sometimes the meaning of phrases is ambiguous in Rosetta Stone haha
Shouldn't "there's coffee?" be accepted? Or does a raise in pitch not imply an interrogative tone in swedish?
There's a minor difference between "Is there coffee?" and "There's coffee?", and it's the same difference in Swedish between Finns det kaffe? and Det finns kaffe?
"Finns det finn finn" is it right translate to "Is is there fine Finn?"