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Re: [Lingo] Usage of "should"

On 31 May 2012 12:05, Nguyễn Vũ Hưng <> wrote:

> In the sentence:
> "Contingent response: the actions to be taken should the risk event
> actually occur"
> I need some help:
> 1. What is the meaning of "should",

You can take it to mean "if" in this example.

> 2. I thought that in this case, "should" can be replace by "when", and,

No, "when" means it will/is likely to happen. "should" implies it is not
that likely.

> 3. Usage of "should" like this are common at the front desk of hotels
> :), not technical English :)

It's quite correct English. It's explained the Shorter OED entry for
"shall": "In a hypothetical cl. relating to the future, indicating that
the supposition, though entertained as possible,  is viewed as less likely
or less welcome than some alternative."



Jim Breen
Adjunct Snr Research Fellow, Clayton School of IT, Monash University
Webmaster: Hawthorn Rowing Club, Treasurer: Japanese Studies Centre
Graduate student: Language Technology Group, University of Melbourne

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