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Sick of JavaOne? - You will be

Suspected Norovirus stalks halls

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With Sun Microsystems banging on about Web 2.0 and mashups for days, anyone would be excused for feeling ready to hurl by day-three of its annual JavaOne conference.

Come Friday, though, 70 people were genuinely ill having contracted what officials believed to he the highly contagious norovirus.

Norovirus is contracted simply by touching dirty surfaces and leads to projectile vomiting, diarrhea, fever and headaches for up to 48 hours. It can be found in communal environments, like cruise ships, and hit 2.8m people in the UK earlier this year.

A spokesman for San Francisco's Moscone Center, hosting Javaone, said staff had spent the whole of Thursday night disinfecting every surface at the venue that people might touch.

Sixty-seven individuals brought in to the Moscone to set up and three attendees from the crowd of 15,000 had been reported sick by Friday afternoon. People started succumbing on Thursday night.

This is believed the first such outbreak at the Moscone, which hosts 119 shows a year, and is home to many technology events.

Eleven thousand attendees of Oracle OpenWorld were turned out from the Moscone in September 2003, following a bomb threat. Yours truly was among them.®

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