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    #1

    could/would/will

    Your eyesight could very well deteriorate in time to come if you continue to spend hours on the computer every day without any breaks.

    The answer is 'could' with 'would' as one of the choices. Is it possible to use 'would' or 'will'?

    Thanks.

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: could/would/will

    This is expressing a possibility - it "could" (but may not) happen if you continue. That makes the certainty of "will" inappropriate.
    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.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: could/would/will

    'Could' and 'might' can be used to express less likely possibilities than 'can' and 'may respectively:
    I can/could see you tomorrow.
    I may/might see you tomorrow.


    As 'will' expresses certainty, as Barb suggested, the idea of less possible certainty would be strange (if you used it):
    I will see you tomorrow.
    I would see you tomorrow.


    Though I don't recommend using it, it's just about possible when 'will' implies logical certainty:
    You will be Mr Brown.
    You would be Mr Brown.


    Note that none of my example sentences involves a condition, but the same is true of first conditional sentences.

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    #4

    Re: could/would/will

    Thanks, Barb and 5jj.

    Your eyesight could very well deteriorate in time to come if you continue to spend hours on the computer every day without any breaks.

    Is it not true that if a person spends hours on the computer every day wtihout any breaks, his or her eyesight will deteriorate? I was thinking of 'will' because I thought that it is a fact that a person's eyesight will be badly affected by continuous playing on the computer.

    Please excuse for troubling both of you again.

    Many thanks for your guidance.

  3. 5jj's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: could/would/will

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    Your eyesight could very well deteriorate in time to come if you continue to spend hours on the computer every day without any breaks.

    Is it not true that if a person spends hours on the computer every day wtihout any breaks, his or her eyesight will deteriorate? I was thinking of 'will' because I thought that it is a fact that a person's eyesight will be badly affected by continuous playing on the computer.
    If you believe that, then 'will' is fine (without 'very well); 'would' isn't, for the reason I mentioned in my last post. It would be fine in a second conditional sentence:

    Your eyesight would very well deteriorate in time to come if you continued to spend hours on the computer every day without any breaks.

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    #6

    Re: could/would/will

    Hi 5jj

    I deeply appreciate your crystal-clear explanation to my second post on the topic.

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