Neither could I. Can anyone explain this further? Does this occur in other words ending in -en?
-"Inn" can be used in an imperative sentence such as "Gå inn!" ="Go inside!" -"Inne" basically means inside. "Det er varmt her inne" = It's warm in here" -"i" can be used after "inne" to describe placement inside something. "Det er inne i esken" = "It's inside the box"
-"i" can be translated to "in". "Det står i boka". ="It's written in the book" "De bor i Norge" = "They live in Norway" "I vår tid." = "In our time."
-To connect two identical nouns: "De bor vegg i vegg" ="They live next door" (lit: they live wall in wall)
-To indicate means etc: "Jeg sa det i beste mening" = "I said it with the best intentions"
-"På" can indicate placement: "Det står på bordet" =It's on the table"
-To describe means, reason: "Han er på flukt" = He's on the run"
-With a verb: "Du ligner på din mor" ="You look like your mom"
...And much more. You'll get a feeling of it eventually :) And I'm sure the course will go into more detail on this as well.
Paa is more general, it has many translations: On the, in the, on, upon, and I think several more. Its hard to tell when to use it, but generally you will be using paa far more than you ever will i
Also note: inn indicates direction/movement, inne a location. Vi går inn - vi er inne (This also goes for ut-ute, hjem-hjemme, ned-nede...)
På + neuter noun can mean in: på kjøkkenet - in the kitchen, på toget - on the train (meaning inside it, not on the roof)
The meaning is slightly different. A seat is pretty unspecified, it could be on a chair, a sofa, in a car.. "The boy sits on the seat" would be translated to "Gutten sitter på setet."
I keep unconsciously translating 'stolen' to 'the stool' lol, it does get confusing