Did you know that Mac ships with a light weight http server to test out stuff like mobile apps, or simple http request based apps? Yes its a python based. I use a local HTTP server all of the time when I am writing pure HTML apps for mobile and there are many times where I need to serve up the content via a server instead of file based approach.
The way it works is, via a terminal window, you navigate to your root web folder and simply issue the command:
python -mSimpleHTTPServer 8088
Note that 8088 is the port, and is optional. The default port is 8000 if you omit it.