I would like to get to the bottom of something that's been bugging me for years: How Koreans think about 알다 and its conjugation when responding to someone telling them something.
Manager: 이 문서는 오류가 많아요. This document has many errors
Employee: 알았습니다. OK, I'm aware of that. (No idea if that interpretation is correct)
Manager: 확인해서 수정 해주세요. Please check it and modify it.
Employee: 알겠습니다. OK, I will do it.
I don't know if the example makes any sense, but as always in Korean, we must know the context to be able to make sense of anything, so I did my best to set the stage.
Some have told me that 알겠습니다 is just a more formal/honorific form of 알았습니다. However, it seems odd that one would use the verb "to know" in these situations. Literally, I would translate 알았습니다 as "I knew", and 알겠습니다 as "I will know", both of which make absolutely no sense in this situation.
What is in the mind of Koreans when they say these in response to what someone else has told them? Is there any difference in meaning or connotation between 알았습니다 and 알겠습니다 in this context?
Can 알았습니다 correctly translate as "I knew" (i.e. I don't know any more)? If not, what does 알았습니다 mean, and would 알았었습니다 be a better translation for "I knew" (i.e. I don't know any more)?
How do I say "I know" (i.e. I already know that)? Is it 알아요 or 알고 있어요?
In Korean, does 알다 mean "having knowledge", as in English, or is it better interpreted as "acquiring knowledge" (e.g. learning)?