Loading an entire directory

Hi all! I’ve been reading through the XML tutorials which I’ve found extremely informational and helpful, as I am in the process of designing a new portfolio site.
My question is simple, and I imagine someone must have already asked it: Can we read in an entire directory of images (and maybe caption files and whatever else) and automatically enumerate them without the aid of an XML file?
I’m sure that anyone who has a client who wants to be able to “quickly and easily” update their own portfolio can understand the need for this. Unfortunately I couldn’t trust my client to manually update an XML file.
Of course, my apologies if this has already been answered because it seems like an obvious question. Thanks in advance everyone!
:: daleth ::