One of five short-lived Apple [AAPL] iPhone applications is causing quite a stir. Notorious $999.99 "I Am Rich," effectively does nothing: the program loads as a screensaver of a glowing red gem... That's all. The app was in the iTunes store for only two calendar days before the Cupertino-based company pulled it off, but not after 8 people purchased it - at the maximum possible price for an item on iTunes. The flurry of fussing since last Tuesday, the day "I Am Rich" was published, has been monstrous. The initial shock that Apple would support a useless Money Suck struck some as poor business or even a sign of incompetency. Two people bought the app "by accident," at least one because he thought "it was a joke ." It turns out that neither Apple nor his credit card company thought it was a joke, but Heinrich claims he will return the money to both individuals. But the furious debate continues on whether this app was a scam, high art, or just a waste of time. Heinrich says to the Los Angeles Times , "The App is a work of Art and included a 'secret mantra' -- that's


"I Am Rich" is not the only app that Apple has a love-hate relationship with. Nullriver's NetShare tethers the iPhone's Internet connection to a computer to become a functional wireless modem (off iTunes due to AT&T contract violation). Other apps such as Box Office were useful and popular, and also got the shove-off. "I Am Rich" didn't violate rules either, at least according to Heinrich. "I have no idea why they did it and am not aware of any violation of the rules to sell software on the App Store," he said today.

Apple, write him his check and make way for the LOLCats app .