For a more hackish method then the one listed by @Saariko you could edit your hosts file. This is not a robust solution and has to be updated manually, if your network set up changes.
It can also hide network problems if names don't resolve correctly through other tools like wins and dns
Host file on Ubuntu and many other *nix is found
In windows the hosts file is usually found
To make changes in Ubuntu edit the file and put in the ip address and hostnames you want.
sudo vi /etc/hosts
In my host file I add all the web severs I set up for my web development
Then I can ping
$ ping local.home
PING local.home (127.0.0.1) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from localhost (127.0.0.1): icmp_seq=1 ttl=64 time=0.037 ms