2

Nowadays, computers have become useful facilities at home. Whereas, they also bring a harmful impact to young students of those who use it frequently. Thus|So I believe their demerits overwhelmingly exceed their merits if too much time is spent on it.

In this writing, which one between thus and so is an appropriate linking word that should be used to connect the last two sentences?

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To answer your question:

Use "Thus," in a formal paper. You can also use "Therefore,".

If you're writing informally, it doesn't matter, but beginning a sentence with "So" is generally considered unacceptable in formal written English. Most peer reviewers and editors will ask that it be changed.

The three sentences you've written need editing. Here's one possibility (not the best, not optimal, but it corrects some grammatical errors and eliminates some of the verbosity):

Computers have become useful and, in some cases, necessary facilities at home. Nevertheless, they also have a harmful effect on young students who frequently use them. Thus, I believe that their demerits overwhelmingly outweigh their merits for those who spend too much time on them.

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  • Could you explain a little bit about the difference between "nevertheless" and "whereas"? – canoe May 5 '13 at 8:28
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    @canoe: In academic prose, whereas is a synonym for but, which implies a contrast: Rum is made from sugar cane, {but / whereas [CHOOSE ONE]} gin is made from juniper berries. Nevertheless also implies a contrast & can sometimes be a synonym for but: Wild Turkey's 50% alcohol & Bailey's Irish Cream's only 17% alcohol{, but / ; nevertheless [CHOOSE ONE]}, a fifth of Wild Turkey makes me feel real good, & a bottle of Bailey's makes me puke my guts out. You can say "Whereas a fifth of Wild Turkey makes me feel real good, a bottle of Bailey's makes me puke my guts out". – user264 May 5 '13 at 8:55
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    @canoe Also, whereas should be avoided at the beginning of a sentence, where it is ambiguous: it has the alternative meaning Given that or In light of the fact that. This use is common in Proclamations. – StoneyB on hiatus May 5 '13 at 13:57
  • +1 In the humanities, at least, sentence-initial So is acceptable as a very strong marker that what follows summarizes a fairly long preceding argument. It is particularly favored at the beginning of a paragraph or section which will take that summary as the springboard for development (or contradiction) in a new direction. "So the critical consensus is that Grisilde is a model of wifely virtue; but do the events of the Tale justify this reading? I think not. ..." – StoneyB on hiatus May 5 '13 at 14:04
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    @BillFranke I have no idea what MLA accepts or prohibits (I only consult it for documentation style), but Real Writers of all sorts use so (and other coordinating conjunctions) all the time to introduce sentences. What is to be eschewed (to my mind) in formal writing is the colloquial use of So as a mere 'discourse marker': "So what are you doing tonight?" – StoneyB on hiatus May 5 '13 at 15:22

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