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Thread: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

 
  1. #1
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    Default This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Sometimes I still get confused about esto verus este.

    For example, if someone is explaining a situation to me, and I want to say "this is a problem", I'd be tempted to say "Esto es un problema".

    But if I wanted to say "This is a serious problem" I think I have to instead say "Este es un problema grave".

    Is that right?

    Can someone shed some light on why these are different and what some general rules are regarding which one to use?

    Michael

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Don´t worry about esto or este. You can use both. You can say "Esto es un problema" o "Este es un problema" , they are correct. The DRAE (the official dictionary for spanish) basically gives the same meaning for both and also for esta (the feminine of este)

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    I learned that esto, eso, and aquello were neuter demonstrative pronouns used to refer to situations or ideas that don't have gender. Este and esta are used (with accents) for specific nouns that do have gender.

    ?Que libro prefieres? Prefiero este. (Sorry, I don't know how to type letters with accents)
    Esta camisa es mas bonita que esa.
    Marta fuma y nunca hace ejercicios. Eso puede hacerle dano.

    This is what I learned, but take advice from a native speaker before you listen to me. I just thought the explanation might help clarify.
    Last edited by mariaklec; 01-14-2009 at 07:35 PM.

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.


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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Thanks, Fernando. I looked at the page you suggested. But, I don't understand what the difference is between "estos cuentos" with an accent and without an accent.

    It says: "(el tilde) is obligatorio in los casos en que puede haber ambiguedad con los determinativos, por lo que estamos ante una tilde diacritica o diferenciadora."

    Ambiguity between what two meanings?
    (And also, why "estamos?")

    Thanks for helping me with this.
    M

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    mariaklec, you can probably make accents easily. If you are on a version of Windows, see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/306560 . But here, instead of the default they suggest, I just choose English US except on my work computer where I’m the only user. It will really irritate another user. It is better if it wakes up in normal mode. After you get the little keyboard icon near the bottom right, you can click it and choose international to make the accents. It does take a little getting used to. Especially the single quote. Click it, and nothing happens until you click a vowel. Then the vowel pops up accented.

    Another way is to use a word processor that understands Spanish such as Microsoft Word. It will supply a lot of accents automatically. But you have to install the language. It isn't hard.
    Last edited by gernt; 01-15-2009 at 09:57 PM.

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Thanks, Gernt. I'm going to make this my weekend project. I have Windows, but I have a Mac. I can change the language to Spanish, and then all my menu options, etc. are in Spanish (and you're right, my husband isn't thrilled about that) but I still can't figure out how you're supposed to type the accented letters. But, as I said, it will make a good weekend project.

    Translate anymore poetry lately? You did such a nice job on the Leander poem.

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Thanks. I'll be interested to see how it works on a Mac. But if the default is set to standard keyboard, your husband will never notice the difference unless you walk away from it and leave it in international mode. And even then, he can learn to switch it back with two clicks.

    US keyboards are usually referred to as QWERTY keyboards. In Europe, they use AZERTY keyboards that have all the accents ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AZERTY ). Trying to switch to AZERTY is enough to put anyone over the edge. But I know a Belgian who worked for IBM that had to switch three times when changing offices.
    Last edited by gernt; 01-16-2009 at 11:08 AM.

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Chéck ít oút, Gérnt!! Thánks fór yóúr hélp!!

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    Default Re: This is a problem, this is a big problem.

    Um - Felicitaciones, pero ojalá su marido no va a decir !@#$%^ cuando el teclado está dejado en US international.

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