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In English, a word "regarding" is quite frequent. I can use it even as a "buffer word", or a word for "changing the topic". Eg. I talk to my friend, the conversation comes to an end, and I just want to quickly mention some other topic. I can say: Ok, fine, agreed, we meet on Friday in the restaurant. And regarding your broken PC, don't worry, I fix it till next week. How would you (in an informal speech) say it in German?

  • Hinsichtlich - is too formal, and needs genitive... which is less and less common.
  • Wegen - is it better? ("...im Restaurant. Und wegen deinem kaputten Computer,...")
  • Und was deinen kaputten Computer betrifft, - it sounds too formal... something like "As far as your broken PC is concerned...", which is not really very colloquial.

Or is the real solution to understand, that Germans simply do not use this word very often? Do they just re-phrase the whole sentence to avoid this conjunction? From my "researches" so far, I believe this is the case! But - how would the sentences in my example look in that case? Would Germans just use something like "...im Restaurant. Und deinen Computer, ich werde ihn am Wochenende reparieren..."?

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    Maybe also “und zu deinem Computer”.
    – Carsten S
    Dec 7, 2023 at 13:14
  • Note that "wegen" tends to take the genitive as well. In your example, it's dative.
    – tofro
    Dec 7, 2023 at 16:09
  • Also "bezüglich deines kaputten Computers" and "apropos kaputter Computer". Dec 8, 2023 at 16:47

3 Answers 3

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Und was deinen kaputten Computer betrifft, - it sounds too formal...

To be honest I don't see why this would be too formal. This is actually how people talk. I agree with your objection regarding "hinsichtlich". Not, because it requires Genitiv, but because the word itself is rarely used in informal speech. In fact I see no such thing as Genitiv becoming less and less common.

Speaking of Genitiv: "wegen" also requires Genitiv: wegen deines Computers and not "wegen deinem Computer".

Alternative markings for an abrupt change in topics are "(ach,) übrigens", "außerdem" and "noch was" and perhaps, depending on the region, a few more. Nota bene: all these are used in spoken language only and are not really grammatical. You use them like this:

Wir reden morgen. Ach, übrigens: dein Rechner ist bis nächste Woche fertig.

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    I agree. I would colloquially probably use “angeht” instead of “betrifft”.
    – Carsten S
    Dec 7, 2023 at 13:12
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There are many ways to change the topic in German, so neither might be used as often as the English "regarding your computer, ..."

You mention already three, and your suggestion in the conclusion is also a way often used. Especially colloquially there are further, other options (not worse, not better, more often used, not less often, just further options):

  • "Bezüglich des Computers..." is formal / higher register
  • "Wegen des Computers..." or more colloquial with Dativ "Wegen dem Computer..." works and is used
  • "Hinsichtlich des Computers..." is also a bit formal / higher register
  • "Was den Computer betrifft: ..." is colloquial and a somewhat lower register, not found in written language
  • "Nochmal zum Computer: ..." is colloquial, and not found in written language
  • "Zum Thema Computer: ..." is colloquial
  • "Was den Computer angeht / anbelangt: ..." is colloquial
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  • "Betreffend deines Computers ...." ;)
    – Karl
    Dec 7, 2023 at 21:16
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My verbal expression would be: "Und zum computer,..." which is as terse as it gets...

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