neofight78, frustrating is at least clearly understandable for me, as a Russian. Make a difference is idiomatic (so I'm not sure what it means) and also can be further elaborated:
- "His score on this test will make the difference between passing and failing"(dictionary)
Here I can only think of "his passing depends on" or "his score determines"
- "These curtains sure make a difference in the lighting."
I can only think of "change lighting"
But why 'make a/the difference' and not "depend" and "change"? Does "make a difference' makes a difference?
- "if you’re really determined to find that next big idea and time it right to make a difference, it typically takes 20 years from discovery to takeoff" (form a Russian forum) Have no idea what it may mean:)))) As I understand, implication is that this idea will be of some use for someone?
Russian 'изменить ситуацию' is 'change the situation'. Far less idiomatic. The emphasis is on 'situation', that is, it is implied that there is some 'situation' to change.