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    #1

    present continuous

    As I understand, the present continuous is formed by using the "be plus verb plus ing" formula. It shows an action that is taking place at the moment. Why would "I am going to San Francisco" be considered the future instead of "I am going to go to San Francisco", the latter which is considered a future tense expression.

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    #2

    Re: present continuous

    The present continuous is frequently used to denote a future arrangement. The meaning of such present continuous utterances is often virtually identical to that of BE+going to utterances.

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    #3

    Re: present continuous

    Quote Originally Posted by raschief12 View Post
    As I understand, the present continuous is formed by using the "be plus verb plus ing" formula. It shows an action that is taking place at the moment. Why would "I am going to San Francisco" be considered the future instead of "I am going to go to San Francisco", the latter which is considered a future tense expression.
    USUALLY, "going to go" (i.e. "going to" imediately followed by a verb such as in your post ["go] and followed by a noun (e.g. San Fransisco, the cinema, the game etc.) with no time reference, also as in your post, would suggest "going" at the moment of speaking (i.e. pesent continuous), unless the noun/location is followed by a time reference, as in "I am going to San Francisco tomorrow (next week, on Thursday etc.)", in which case it would indicate future. Context and the dialogue between speaker and listener would be the determining factor.

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    #4

    Re: present continuous

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    USUALLY, "going to go" (i.e. "going to" imediately followed by a verb such as in your post ["go] and followed by a noun (e.g. San Fransisco, the cinema, the game etc.) with no time reference, also as in your post, would suggest "going" at the moment of speaking (i.e. pesent continuous), unless the noun/location is followed by a time reference, as in "I am going to San Francisco tomorrow (next week, on Thursday etc.)", in which case it would indicate future. Context and the dialogue between speaker and listener would be the determining factor.
    I agree with your last sentence, but not with those preceding it.
    You seem to be confusing/conflating the present continuous of GO with the BE+going+to structure.

    I am going to San Francisco. - At this very moment or At some time in the future. Context will tell us which.
    I am going to go to San Francisco - At some time in the future.

    BE+going+to suggests that there is present evidence of a future situation. Whether a noun follows is irrelevant, as is the 'going' at the moment of speaking - except that at the moment of speaking there is present evidence.

    He smokes too much. he is going to die of cancer.
    I've always wanted to see the Taj Mahal. I am going to see it before I die.
    Last edited by 5jj; 11-Oct-2011 at 23:43. Reason: typo

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    #5

    Re: present continuous

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    I agree with your last sentence, but not with those preceding it.
    You seem to be confusing/conflating the present continuous of GO with the BE+going+to structure.

    I am going to San Francisco. - At this very moment or At some time in the future. Context will tell us which.
    I am going to go to San Francisco - At some time in the future.

    BE+going+to suggests that there is present evidence of a future situation. Whether a noun follows is irrelevant, as is the 'going' at the moment of speaking - except that at the moment of speaking there is present evidence.

    He smokes too much. he is going to die of cancer.
    I've always wanted to see the Taj Mahal. I am going to see it before I die.
    Thanks for your analysis. I did err by "tripping over" my original response, and aside from a few spelling errors which I think I have corrected, I have restated my response, but I do think "going to" followed by a noun suggests movement in a direction or to a location and not necessarily future, unless it includes a time reference. See my retry below.

    USUALLY, "going to go" (i.e. "going to" immediately followed by a verb such as in your post, "go”, and subsequently followed by a noun (e.g. San Francisco, the cinema, the game etc.) would indicate simple future, but “going to” followed by a noun e.g. San Francisco, the cinema, the game etc., with no time reference, also as in your post, would suggest "going" at the moment of speaking (i.e. present continuous), unless the noun/location is followed by a time reference, as in "I am going to San Francisco ( the cinema, the game) tomorrow (next week, on Thursday etc.)", in which case it would indicate future. Context and the dialogue between speaker and listener would be the determining factor.

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