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First off,

''What a huge difference an ocean can make!''

''What difference can an ocean make?'''

Are these correct? (notice the position of can)

''What was that thing?''

''What is that thing?''

When the object is away from you, you use the first sentence. Is this correct? And why? I think that the object is still the same even as you speak.

By the time I came, it will be 9 o'clock.

By the time I come, it will be 9 o'clock.

Why is the first sentence correct and the second wrong? Explanations?

It is designed to protect you against the heat.

It was designed to protect you against the heat.

In speech, I often hear the first sentence. (note: the design is already done) I searched the dictionary and designed is not an adjective. May I know the differences? (and the correct answer too)

This better work or works''

Sorry for the long post. I just can't sleep without getting this out there. Thanks in advance.
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Hello Michael.

Please don't post so many questions together. Start a different thread for unrelated questions.
michaeltingFirst off,
''What a huge difference an ocean can make!'

'''What difference can an ocean make?'''

Are these correct? (notice the position of can)
The first is an exclamation. You could say "I am amazed at what a huge difference an ocean can make" instead. The second is just a question.

You seem to have a variable number of marks in your quotations marks. Two to open the quote, two to close it.

"Like this."

michaelting''What was that thing?''

''What is that thing?''

When the object is away from you, you use the first sentence. Is this correct? And why? I think that the object is still the same even as you speak.
If it's still there, use "is." If it's no longer there, use "was."

michaeltingBy the time I came, it will be 9 o'clock.

By the time I come, it will be 9 o'clock.

Why is the first sentence correct and the second wrong? Explanations?
The first one is wrong and the second one is right.

By the time I got (in the past) there, it was 9 o'clock.

By the time I get there (in the future), it will be 9 o'clock.

(While I would use "by the time I come" I would not use "by the time I came." Maybe this is personal preference, but I would use "got there" or "arrived.")

michaeltingIt is designed to protect you against the heat.

It was designed to protect you against the heat.

In speech, I often hear the first sentence. (note: the design is already done) I searched the dictionary and designed is not an adjective. May I know the differences? (and the correct answer too)
I see no difference. You're thinking about it at the time you're using it and the design is still useful right now, or you're thinking about it at the time it was designed.

michaeltingThis better work or works''
This [had] better work. Use the base form of the verb.

michaeltingSorry for the long post. I just can't sleep without getting this out there. Thanks in advance.
Please don't do this again. One question. One post. Thanks.

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michaeltingWhat a huge difference an ocean can make!''
''What difference can an ocean make?'''
Are these correct? (notice the position of can)
Both are correct. The first is exclamatory (emphasis form), and the second, interrogative (question form.)
michaelting'What was that thing?''
''What is that thing?''
When the object is away from you, you use the first sentence. Is this correct? And why? I think that the object is still the same even as you speak.
"What was that thing?'' Something whizzed by you very fast and it is now gone. You and your friend saw it and you are asking your friend if they could identify it.

''What is that thing?'' You and your friend are looking at something and you point at it and ask your friend if they can identify it.

michaeltingBy the time I came, it will be 9 o'clock.
By the time I come, it will be 9 o'clock.
Why is the first sentence correct and the second wrong? Explanations?
By the time I came, it will be 9 o'clock. Wrong. You are mixing tenses incorrectly.

By the time I come, it will be 9 o'clock. Correct. The present tense form is being used for a future planned event.
michaeltingIt is designed to protect you against the heat.
It was designed to protect you against the heat.
In speech, I often hear the first sentence. (note: the design is already done) I searched the dictionary and designed is not an adjective. May I know the differences? (and the correct answer too)
Both are correct. The first is talking about the features of an object's design.

It is designed to protect you against the heat. The object has a design. The salesman is telling you about this design (which still exists in the object) and its purpose.

It was designed to protect you against the heat. This is just telling you about the requirements that went into the design process (which is in the past). This form of statement is often used when the original design intent did not come out quite as expected.

e.g.

The space shuttle was designed to be a reusable and inexpensive means for space travel. (One can argue that it did not turn out to be as reusable or inexpensive as originally intended.)
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Comments  
Ok

Thank you both for your kind help.
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Oh ya, Just one more thing.

If I change the question up a little bit,

A research is carried out to learn about frogs.

A research was carried out to learn about frogs.

First sentence means that a research is going on. Second sentence means that a research was going on and has been completed. Is my inference correct?
michaelting
A research is carried out to learn about frogs.
A research was carried out to learn about frogs.
Research is noncount. You will occasionally see it in older ( and perhaps British) literature as plural.

Research is carried out to learn about frogs. To learn about frogs, you have to do research. It does not necessarily mean that such projects are presently being done.

Research was carried out to learn about frogs. The research project is complete.