Icelandic: Computer language!

Discussion in 'Nordic Languages' started by ShakeyX, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. ShakeyX Senior Member

    British English
    I have had much struggle over this year coming to terms with the simple present use of a verb translating over to the progressive in english... (við förum út/við erum að fara út - We are going out)

    However I came to a personal conclusion/not confirmed (after reading part of my Icelandic grammar book that said simple present could be used for an action just about to take place) that even though they translate both to a continuous in english, the continuous in icelandic is used for actions that are exactly currently happening while the simple form can be used for something that is going to happen in the immediate future or a state. Much like (ég borga, ég er að borga - One denotes that "you are paying", maybe sitting at the table, stating that you will be the one that is paying, you are paying for everyone, whereas the later could be if someone rang you while you were AT the counter, and you had to say I am busy... I am paying.. "ég er upptekinn, ég er að borga fyrir matinn".

    Baring all this in mind whether it has exceptions or not it seems to work for most my decisions, however as I've been told a lot that anything that CAN be said in the simple form can normally be said in the continuous but I am thinking not vice versa.

    Okay, so basically i'm under the impression that if someone wanted to convey the meaning that they were ACTUALLY at that second going somewhere they would use ég er að fara... whereas if they were to go in the future (in a state of going to some event) they coul duse either ég er að fara or ég fer...

    So if this logic is anywhere near correct I was wondering if maybe Computer language is just a separate branch that cannot be compared along side or that other choices might of gone into consideration when choosing what menus would say. As when anything is loading it will say "Hleður" not "(Eitthvað er) að hlaða". As I can only value it to mean LOADING in the continuous sense, I wonder if this choice was perhaps just to have one word, or there is a grammatical reason. If the "simple" form is really synonymous with the continuous in icelandic can someone give any examples where you are directly doing an action (like youtube is directly LOADING) and you would use the simple to convey it.

    i.e. you are trying to say, you are busy, you are literally paying the woman at the checkout... a sort of "can't you see that I am paying". I would 100% of the time assume the ég er að borga form and not the ég borga.

    Go easy on me.
  2. Silver_Biscuit

    Silver_Biscuit Senior Member

    English - UK
    The first bit is correct, but I wouldn't really use the continuous form to express future intention. That is what ætla is for. So if I were going to go to an event in the future I could say "Ég fer í partýið á eftir" if I were going soon, but otherwise it would be a lot better just to say "Ég ætla að fara í partýið". Fara isn't really a great example verb for this, because if you were going somewhere at that second you'd probably say "Ég er á leiðinni [í/til ...]" or something.

    Yep, this is correct. For actions that are taking place, the continuous is usually the right form.

    Nope, this is where you've gone wrong. There are plenty of verbs that you have to use the simple present tense with in order to express something that is happening right now - it has nothing to do with computers. For example:

    Hann er að sitja í sófanum :cross:
    Hann situr í sófanum :tick:
    Hún er að liggja á gólfinu :cross:
    Hún liggur á gólfinu :tick:

    Hlaða is a verb like sitja and liggja. Off the top of my head, I can't remember if there's some sort of logic behind which verbs are like this and which not or whether it's just something you have to learn. But there are more examples.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2013
  3. ShakeyX Senior Member

    British English
    Yeh I have heard about sitja and liggja following this rule and I read something about it being that they were positional verbs, or verbs that described a persons physical state. But Hlaða doesn't seem to fit this category in the same way. So is it just enough for me to accept that hlaða works like this, in and out of the computer world? Do you have any examples?

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