Any difference between peni and provi?
What is the difference if they both mean try? Is one more sophisticated?
There are three words that are often translated as "to try". "Provi" is the most general.
- provi - to test out and see if it's possible.
- peni - to make an effort to do something
- klopodi - to take steps to get something done.
Edit: corrected typo - the correct spelling is "provi".
Also, can you add a "s" to the end of an adjective so you don't have to use estas?
I am going to disagree with SeptimusBones here (Edit: now I don't see his comment.), but my first question is - are you reading the notes for the lessons? A lot of your questions are answered there.
I've explained this elsewhere in the forums, and in some detail, but while I strongly recommend the Duolingo Esperanto course, and while I'll say that the team has put a TON of work into it even over the last 12-18 months and there has been a lot of improvement in the course, I continue to think that the treatment of "adjectives into verbs" (as it's called in the tips and notes) is one of the greater weaknesses of the course.
My position is that the course overstates the case for these forms, and my impression (from extensive conversations with various members of the team) is that this is the result of the decisions of one or two members of the team. One particular member of the team has advocated this position in the forums.
So, to answer your question - it's an emphatic "no". You can NOT add an -s to an adjective "so you don't have to use estas." What you can do is turn any root into a verb by adding a verb ending like -as, -is, -os, us, or -i. If (and only if) the resulting word makes sense, then you can use that word.
The confusion comes in when a word like "blui" is used in poetry. "Blui" means "the action associated with blue" - and the only conceivable action associated with blue is to give off blueness. I have seen numerous cases where new users on the forum over extend this and end up using words wrong. I've also seen this done by members of the course team. This is why I advise learners to use forms like
- Mi estas malvarma.
You can NOT add an -s to an adjective "so you don't have to use estas."
You're talking about those verbs that don't mean "esti -a" (like "kolori" to color and "esti kolora" to be colorful), or that are so uncommoon that they're used only in special nuances, right? I ask it because I've seen some verbs that are made from the adjective and mean exactly "esti -a", like "sani", "malsani" and "pravi".
The words I'm talking about fall into several categories.
One category, as you noted, are the ones that very clearly want to be verbs - like malsati and pravi. Yes, you can say mi estas malsata or vi estas prava - but you'll at least as often hear mi malsatas or vi pravas.
Gotta run so I can't go into more detail.
But there are several categories - and only one of them would include "kolori".
But even "tio verdas" is one of the words I'm talking about . Look it up in PMEG.
"Mi penas levi la ŝtonon" - I want this stone up on that wall there. I'm going to try and lift it so I can put it there. If I lift it, I succeed; if not, I fail.
"Mi provas levi la ŝtonon" - I'm curious about this stone; I wonder how heavy it is? I'm going to try and lift it just to see if I can. Whether I lift it or not, I've succeeded at trying.
Are you saying that if you make an effort to do something but fail to do it that you've failed to make an effort?
Ĉu vi diras ke se oni penas fari ion sen sukceso ke oni ne sukcesis peni fari ĝin?