Working on git, not git-annex the past two days, I have implemented the smudge-to-file/clean-from-file extension to the smudge/clean filter interface. Patches have been sent to the git developers, and hopefully they'll like it and include it. This will make git-annex v6 work a lot faster and better.
Amazing how much harder it is to code on git than on git-annex! While I'm certianly not as familiar with the git code base, this is mostly because C requires so much more care about innumerable details and so much verbosity to do anything. I probably could have implemented this interface in git-annex in 2 hours, not 2 days.