Posted by Bob on November 13, 2003
In Reply to: Ask what they're going to do? posted by daniela on November 13, 2003
: I found this "fill the gaps" exercise and I have some doubts about it.
: Ask hundreds of people what they__________ (do) on a certain day in August next year....
: could I fill it like that?:
: "what they ARE GOING TO DO"' or "they will be doing" would be the only appropriate answer?
: and this one:
: Chris and I went together last year and WE'VE THOUGHT of spending two or three months in the USA next year.
: Could the phrase "WE'VE THOUGHT" be possible?
: or the only solution would be "we're thinking"?
: I'm really curious to hear about that.
: Thanks very much
Many answers are possible.
In addition to "will be doing" and "are going to do" that you mentioned, "will do," "may do," are thinking of doing," "could possibly do," "might do," "will be please to do" are logical usages. "Do" by itself won't do, because you're talking about the future.
In your second example, both usages are acceptable. "We've thought" means the thinking has ended, "we're thinking" means it's ongoing. There are, again, many other possible answers, including "we're trembling with excitement at the possibility of forming a committee to investigate the chances ..."