I recently added a couple of extra Auto Index links to my Pages-based site using phplugins (great success!) to showcase links to our community project websites and provide download links for videos we've built.
The thought was to allow the users to drill down through the auto indexes until they reached the target links which would allow them to navigate to the other sites or get to the video stored on Google Drive (once I figured out why my web hosting vendor was only showing half of the videos...turns out they're running 32-bit Apache which doesn't see anything bigger than 2GB...bummer!).
I was able to get the effect I was hoping for by using Auto Index Enabler to create a directory with autoindex.xml and pointing it thumbnails/thumbnail.jpg which I manually created. These directories were then uploaded to the target auto index folder and they displayed as intended.
You can see them using the "Community Projects" and "Videos" links in the navigation bar:
But after messing about Auto Index Enabler, it occurred to me that Publisher could theoretically be extended to provide this behaviour with the added benefit that publisher would know that those enabled links (or galleries or whatever else was being enabled) is there and be able to manage them rather than having the auto indexes being managed by Publisher and the enabled links directories being managed outside of the CE4 environment. Making them Publisher-aware would also allow easier hiding of the links from Auto Index (one of the project links isn't ready for prime time...I hid it by renaming autoindex.xml to autoindex.xml.hidden so that I can turn it on once we've sorted out the photo release paperwork).
It would also encourage more use of Publisher which wouldn't be a bad thing either...
(And if there was a more elegant way for me to achieve the auto indexes ending in enabled links that I did above, I wouldn't mind learning about that as well...Red Vixen Studios is my third CE4-based site (and the best one of the lot, IMO!) and will soon be joined by two more with the second one being the most ambitious yet...marrying a Pages-based site to manage the content from 2016 onward with my existing 13 year-old personal website. *THAT* is going to be fun...
We don't plan to add Auto Index Enabler functionality to publisher, as the intent of Publish Services is to work with images from your Library; Auto Index Enabler only creates empty entries.