Rumor has it that the hacking group who released the first ever game images of the Wii and PS3 on the web have a backup game loader for the PS3 in their ranks.
The loader is said to run from the HDD via an exploit in firmware v1/v1.1. Obviously this is a pure software exploit and it's likely Sony will patch it ASAP.
The group in question are supposedly holding out on releasing the loader because they are waiting for the European launch of the console and are waiting for 'good games' to come out for the system.
Either way, if you had hopes of a loader coming soon for the PS3 you'll be disappointed unless someone beats the respective group to the punch and then they'll play their cards too.