Is this really an example of passato prossimo (present perfect) or is this just the present tense of "to be" with an adjective? I'm not the strongest on grammar, hence the question, but I don't see why this is fundamentally different than "she is happy everywhere" (Lei è felice ovunque).
It is great strategy for people who do not drawn in the language. If I were firm and selc confident enough, I would really appreciate it. On the other hand, I am hardly understanding essere/avere, gender (un)following etc., so I spent long time trying to translate it using past tense. I rejected the proper solution as not being a part of the lesson. Knowing that it was planned to inherit another grammer I admit that it is useful. However, I still think that the notice in the explanation part could be provided.
I have to agree with the notion of it being intentional. Remember, there is no teacher explaining all the rules. DL leaves you to ferret that out yourself through patterns and discussion. This is certainly them showing you ways the vocabulary is used. I've seen it over and over again.
Yes, I've noticed a lot of present passive constructions in the present perfect section. Very confusing when you have to guess the translations and you are used to using the name of the lesson to establish the context of the grammar! In English this is the same as the use of 'to be' with past participles as adjectives because we use 'to be' to make the passive voice, unlike in German (not sure of any other examples) where 'werden' (to become) is used.
It seems to usually function to show you that very similar-looking constructions can in fact translate quite differently. Here, it's probably going to show us lots of things related to verbal adjectives as these are the most confusing thing relating to present perfect for new learners.
It woul require DL to put that possible answer every time "lei" is used. As someone who has learned Italian in the past, it has surprised me - having worked through the DL course step by step - that "You"(formal) has not actually been taught yet in this course. So I haven't yet offered it as an answer!
because conoscere is a transitive verb, therefor it usually takes avere rather than essere. so when you use essere with a verb that uses avere, that's the passive voice. read more: http://tutorino.ca/grammatica/2007/7/17/the-italian-passive-voice-la-voce-passiva.html
Pretty much, both languages have an adjective form of the verb that expresses the state of having done (for intransitive) or undergone (for transitive) the action of the verb. The difference (from what I understand so far) is that English forms an (active) past tense with "have" + past participle and (for transitive) a passive present tense with "be" + pp, where Italian does the same except that it forms an active past tense with "be" (instead of "have") + pp for intransitive verbs. (English has some possible remnants of this, like "He is gone.")
So... i've spent the past while trying to figure out when present perfect conjugates the second verb so it ends in -ato/-ito/-uto, and when it conjugates it to end in -a or -i.
My read of the commentary below is that present perfect always conjugates the second verb so it ends in -o, and the confusion is just because some of the verbs in this lesson are actually passive (taking "essere"), and the conjugation of the second verb after "essere" is different from the conjugation after "avere". But i'd love confirmation of that! If it's true, what are the rules when using "essere"?
The past participle conjugated with essere has four possible endings,depending on the gender and number of its subject.
Generally, when avere is the auxiliary verb, the past participle always ends in -o regardless of the subject of the verb. There are exceptions to this when avere is preceded by a direct object.
Is it just me or does it seem like so much of the "practice" in the lessons at this level (I mean after the beginner levels) consist of mainly throwing irregularities, exceptions, and idiomatic uses at you instead of first giving you ample time to practice and solidify the actual material on a simple level first?
I couldn't agree more. I'm almost finished with the complete course, with >50.000 XP in Italian and as of today only seven more skills to go. The further down the "tree" I've come, the weirder the exercices have become. I feel I'm no longer being taught basic, useful stuff for an everyday life in Italy, as more effort is put into constructing sentences that are so out of this world that you'll probably never use any of them.
You do in fact need to know only three verb forms to get by really well in Italian:
the present (io vado, I go, I am going),
the near past (io sono andato, I went, I have gone)
and the imperfect (io cantavo, I sang, I used to sing, I was singing).
I'd really love to learn much more words instead, to improve my possibilities to express myself and enable me to understand written and spoken Italian even more.
But as so many have pointed out before, this is a free course and hence there isn't room for much criticism. I'll just finish the course and move on to somewhere else. All in all I'm grateful for what Duolingo has taught me. I just did an on-line diagnostic test called Dialang at the University of Lancaster and did pretty well, taking into consideration I've started from scratch: level A2 on words and B1 on comprehension of texts.
(Sorry for any mistakes here. My mothertongue is Swedish, not English.)