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Woz wishes Jobs well during leave

Steve Wozniak, a co-founder of Apple, says that word of CEO Steve Jobs' leave "frightened" him at first and that Jobs is right to take time off if he needs it.

Steve Wozniak, an Apple co-founder and one of the company's biggest fans. Scott Ard/CNET

At first, Steve Wozniak was spooked by today's news that Apple CEO Steve Jobs is taking another leave of absence for health reasons, but now the co-founder of Apple says he supports Jobs' decision to take a break.

"I haven't contacted Jobs yet," Wozniak wrote CNET in an e-mail. "The news actually frightened me because I did not expect it. If Steve is tired and wants a bit more normal life, more power to him."

Apple revealed earlier today that Jobs had notified Apple employees about the new leave of absence. Jobs said that he was leaving to focus on his health and that he would still be involved in the company's "major strategic decisions," with COO Tim Cook handling day-to-day operations. Jobs did not say when he would be back.

In 2009, Jobs took a six-month leave to deal with issues related to his battle with pancreatic cancer.

Wozniak not only helped create Apple, along with Jobs and Ronald Wayne in 1976, but holds the unofficial title of being the company's No. 1 fan and one of the tech sector's most beloved elder statesmen.