hey - quick notes.
1) the first time through, it may take a second for all your pics to load. it's not frozen!
2) if you have public picasa albums, be sure to try http://www.chungeez.com/phodyssey/?picasa_id=[YOUR PICASA ID] and you can see your own photos. mine would be http://www.chungeez.com/phodyssey/?picasa_id=asad.sheth
3) this is just a POC - it's not fully optimized (though it is partially, especially for performance), and i did get a little lazy with the code. having said that, you do need a bit of cpu power to run these usably. sorry!
4) DOWNLOAD the code, including a PHP proxy service to handle requests to the GDATA feeds (in the absence of a client library like google provides for calendar and something else)
so... here's an exercise i undertook to see if i still remembered how to do math. there's some polar to rectangular conversion involved in the placement of the images, and i had to shake off some of the rust to sort out the calculations for position in z-space relative to each photo. then too there was the math for size and opacity of the pictures, and then some optimization work to figure out how to make it look smooth. it was great when i was testing it on 25 pictures, but apparently browsers don't like it when you render 255 pics all at once and then try to animate them 30 times a second.
as noted above, you should be able to use the up and down arrows to navigate through. clicking on an image takes you to picasa. the latest images in your picasa public collection are at the front of the starfield (i.e., the first ones you see). in theory, this can be considered a spatial view of an RSS feed containing your photos.
this also grew out of another leverage of the picasa gdata feed - glibt. you can use that to customize the album you're seeing as well. album customization is an easy add here (see the source), but i got lazy coding it in pretty-like.
this has been tested in ie6/ie7/opera9.24/firefox2/firefox3 on vista, ie6/safari3.1.2 on xp. they all complain in varying degrees about the animation, but allowing for some slight tweaking of a) photos at a time and b) speed, you should be able to get comparable performance out of all of them.