This week's book giveaway is in the OO, Patterns, UML and Refactoring forum. We're giving away four copies of Refactoring for Software Design Smells: Managing Technical Debt and have Girish Suryanarayana, Ganesh Samarthyam & Tushar Sharma on-line! See this thread for details.
Yeah I have used that, but man it can get messy fast. Especially with apache mod configs, and using taglibs to generate localized links (taglibs sometimes append on a session id). I think the easiest approach is to just put static files on a web server rather than embedding in a war/ear file. I hate to say that but its true. A servlet container is probably not the best place to store static content. So maybe thats why an exclude feature is not on the horizon even for the 3.0 servlet spec.