"Arrivo tra un secondo."
Translation:I'm arriving in one second.
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Both "correct" solutions are solutions to the problem of how to transliterate "arrivo" into English. But we were asked to "translate", that is, to use its English equivalent (or as close as one can get). I gave you a translation: "I'll be there in a second". "I'll arrive" is simply wrong: in English, we use "arrive" when we are far enough away that some significant amount of time will be needed, e.g. "My plane arrives in two hours", or when a specific time is mentioned, e.g. "My plane arrive at 2 P.M.". "I'm coming in a second" is possible, but is more formal, and would not be used as informally as "arrivo tra un secondo", i.e. something like "I'll be there in a sec" or "in a jiffy". For comparison purposes, look at how the Collins dictionary translates "siamo arrivati": we're here. (http://www.wordreference.com/iten/arrivo%20tra%20un%20secondo)
Yes, I think so too. "Arrive" is not the right word in English.
A good translation should translate the meaning from one language to another as close as possible. My impression is that the creator of the course sometimes chose to use a word that has the same roots in order to make it easier for English speakers to remember the Italian.
If that were someone's rationale, it would be seriously misguided. It is all too easy to see that an English word looks like an Italian one; but one must be taught to avoid being led to think that because two words resemble each other, they are likely to have a similar meaning. This is the problem known as "false friends". For a list of a multitude of such temptingly similar English and Italian words see http://www.reference.tjtaylor.net/false-friends/.
Sometimes "false friends" have completely different meaning.
But sometimes words with the same form (same origin and similar letter arrangement) are pretty close in meaning. There is just some other word in English which represents the meaning of the Italian word (in the given context) more closely.
Do you think, in the second case it is also a bad idea to chose the English word that is closer in appearance over the word that is closer in meaning?
Thank you for your view. I appreciate it. And I hope to get more opinions about this topic since I find it pretty important in designing a language learning course.
As language learners, encountering so much that is unfamiliar, we have a natural tendency to latch onto any scraps that seem familiar. We are quite willing to stretch the meaning of our English word to fit the sense of the foreign lookalike, even if the result ends up distorting both languages. Of course, it is intellectually stimulating to note the resemblance of arrive, arriver (French), arrivare, arribar (Latin-American Spanish), etc. But in the last 1000 years they have been led to serve somewhat difference purposes since they departed from their common late Latin root. My point is a simple one: as learners, we must resist the temptation to turn everything into some version of what we already know. Rather, we must welcome the temporary discomfort of seeking out differences.
My comments are based solely on observing my own failings in this regard. But there is about this topic, as about almost everything else these days, a huge amount of material online. Do a Google search on "research on false friends in language learning" and you get 126,000,000 hits.