Verb CAN for talking about the future

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mafto

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Good evening, I know that for the future, "will be able" is a good substitute for "can".
However, I´ve noticed, that "can" can be used for future abilities as well.
E. g. I can start working an hour later tomorrow should be OK, while *She can swim after she finishes our course is incorrect and "will be able" should be used instead.

So what´s the rule? I think I´ve seen somewhere that if we talk about decisions done at the time of speaking, we can use "can", and when we talk about future abilities, we can´t use it.
Or is it related to being allowed to do something? The first sentence seems to me to express exactly the idea - I am allowed to start later or I can afford to start later..
Please, explain.
Thank you very much :)
 

bhaisahab

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Good evening, I know that for the future, "will be able" is a good substitute for "can".
However, I´ve noticed, that "can" can be used for future abilities as well.
E. g. I can start working an hour later tomorrow should be OK, while *She can swim after she finishes our course is incorrect and "will be able" should be used instead.

So what´s the rule? I think I´ve seen somewhere that if we talk about decisions done at the time of speaking, we can use "can", and when we talk about future abilities, we can´t use it.
Or is it related to being allowed to do something? The first sentence seems to me to express exactly the idea - I am allowed to start later or I can afford to start later..
Please, explain.
Thank you very much :)

You are confusing "can" (am allowed to) and "can" (will be able to). You can substitute "may" for "can" in the first example.
 
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