That depends on what you're using the computers for.

Why do we use 前面 in this sentence. I thought 前面 was infront, why is there a location in a sentence involving use of something? Could someone break this down for me :)

  • You certainly don't sit "behind", "在 ... 后面" or "at the back of" a computer when operating it? Commented Sep 21, 2021 at 3:59

4 Answers 4


I'd translate "That depends on what you're using the computers for" to "那得看你用電腦來做什麼."

English: sit at a computer.

Chinese: sit in front of a computer.

When working with a computer, you don't sit behind a computer.



"That depends on what you do when you sit in front of (facing) a computer"

you have to sit in front of a computer's screen to operate it

The sentence '坐在电脑前面' doesn't describe the situation unambiguously.

Depend on context:

  • 电脑前面 could refer to 'the front of a computer's screen' or 'the front of a computer's CPU'

  • 坐在电脑前面 could mean you sit facing the computer operate it or sit with your back toward the computer, blocking everyone else's access to it.

Are you sure it wasn't "那得看你坐在电脑[面前]做什么"

A computer's screen is its face. '坐在电脑面前' means you are definitely facing its screen



那得看: that depends on

在... 东西 ...前面: in front of something

你坐在电脑前面: (why) you are sat sitting in front of the computer

做什么: do, doing what

what .... for : why

That depends on what you are sat sitting in front of t' computer for.


That is due to the translator assume the user is sitting (坐) and operate the computer, so you need to use 前面 to describe it.

User joehua's translation is better and simple and won't confuse you.

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