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    #1

    Future Tense

    Please look at the sentence - By the time he gets back, it will be / it will have been too late. Can I admit that both choices are right. If not, please explain a difference. Thanks.

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    #2

    Re: Future Tense

    Quote Originally Posted by olegv View Post
    Please look at the sentence - By the time he gets back, it will be / it will have been too late. Can I admit that both choices are right. If not, please explain a difference. Thanks.
    If he is supposed to get back by ten o'clock in order to beat the deadline, and he gets back at eleven o'clock, it is too late. He has got back, too late, the deadline has passed; it is possible that he has been too late on previous occasions, but on this occasion he has been/is too late. So, yesterday it had been/was, and tomorrow it will have been/will be too late.

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    #3

    Re: Future Tense

    I am sorry for a delay in questioning but can I revist this question. To be frank, I still do not understand the big difference in this context so that it will be and it will have been too late sound equally for me. Can you explain to be in other words. Many thanks.

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    #4

    Re: Future Tense

    Being late is a state. I am late right now. I was late coming home yesterday. I will be late tonight.

    He was late two night ago. He was late last night. Since he's due at 7 and it's 6, now, and he's two hours away, he will be late tonight. In fact, by the time he gets home, he will have been late three nights in a row.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #5

    Re: Future Tense

    Thank you.

    Please have a look again - By the time he gets back, it will be / it will have been too late

    1. Can I see it in the way that both meanings overlap and is heavily dependent upon the speaker's veiwing of the situation - the last option, for instance, put an emphasis that the action will be completed before a clause introducing "by"

    2. The last option tends to be more preferable as the clause is introduced by "by" which is a market of future perfect. BUT there can not be a mistake using either option unless other context is given.

    3.

    At 6 o'clock I will leave. = The action of leaving will begin at 6:00.
    At 6 o'clock I will have left. = The action of leaving will be complete by 6:00.


    Am I right? Thanks you.

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    #6

    Re: Future Tense

    You could use the perfect with something like you will have missed the deadline, but with late, the simple is better because you won't have finished being late.

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    #7

    Re: Future Tense

    Thank you very much. Can I admit that you explanation would you relevant to the following context.

    "Don't phone after 11.00. I'll be/I'll have been asleep." I mean that whether two options are possible, the future perfect option works better here as being asleep is the state which "you won't have finished being" asleep. However, if the choices related to I'll go/I'll have gone - perfect is preferable. Thanks a lot.

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    #8

    Re: Future Tense

    The only one of those two that is natural is: "Don't phone after 11.00. I'll be asleep."

    You could also say: "Don't phone after 11.00. I'll have been asleep for hours."
    or:
    "Don't phone after midnight. I'll have left for the airport."

    The main point is that we do not use the so-called 'future perfect' unless there is good reason to do so.

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    #9

    Re: Future Tense

    Many thanks.

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