Publish Services-Hard drive-What for?

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What is the Publish Services--Hard Drive feature useful for?

I often export files to jpg and then upload them to (which oddly is not one of the services featured in LR); should I be publishing them to Hard Drive first? What else is this useful for?
I use the HD publish service to populate folders monitored by iTunes that show up as images in a slideshow on my AppleTV. I have used It is a perfect match for the HD publish service since the Photoshop Express Uploader is a background task that can auto sync a local folder to a user library. By populating a local folder using the LR HD publish service, you complete the task automagically
If you want to have a set of images outside of LR, which you want to keep up to date with whatever changes you make to the originals within LR, you can use a Publish Service to Harddrive.

You put all the images to be controlled into a collection and initially publish, when you're ready to render. From then on, all changes to images within the collection will mark the images for re-publish, which you can then do whenever you want, resulting in re-rendering of just the changed images.

In your case with, you could put the images you want to upload into a published collection, publish it, upload and then delete the JPEGs in the folder you published to. From then on, when you change an image, it will be marked for re-publish in the collection and upon doing so, you'll end up with just the changed images in the folder, ready for re-upload.

Thank you Cletus and Beat; that is very helpful. I just created a published collection to be used for my Desktop Screensavers. One thing that I find kind of odd is that you can't change the folder location after creating the service. Also, what do the folders underneath represent? Why would you want to have multiple folders for the same service? It seems that every time you have a new project in mind, a new service needs to be created.
For my Apple TV Slideshow, I have the Original "parent folder" named 4AppleTV. Each subfolder represents a logical section (for me that is Birds, Spiders, Odonates, Butterflies, and Flora) AppleTV sees each folder as a unique image set and I can choose a different one of the subfolders for the slideshow on demand. I manage the images dynamically through the Publish Collections and LR will add, update or remove these images from the published location. (I also even have some smart Published collections to group photos that meet some LR attribute (i.e. 4 stars or Label color).

Basically, I let LR manage the images in the destination folder. (Something you have been doing manually with your JPEGs for
I have a permanent ftp connection to a folder on my web server as a mapped drive letter which is then used by the LR publish hard drive service. I then create folders in LR to represent different forums I show photo's on. Drop one or more images to a folder, let LR publish them, run a small script to list the contents in a www URL format, make the post on the forum/s, and bob's your uncle... No messing about and referencing the images in the forum post is a simple copy and paste process.
I use them for album design using InDesign:
I put my Lightroom-processed raw files in a Publish Service and publish them to a folder on my hard drive.
In InDesign, I start layouting my album by dragging the published pictures (JPG's or TIFFs) into the InDesign containers.
The nice thing about this is that when I want to change a picture (e.g. I think it'd look better in black & white), I simply make that change in LR. All I have to do then is hit publish again and the updated file will be sent to the folder, from where InDesign will notice it has changed. ID will display a yellow warning triangle. I double click that triangle in ID's link panel and I'm up to date again...
That's exactly what I do too, and a similar exercise with ProShow.
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