@bigjme - we are planning on at least handing OTA updates in our fork.
When the device is going to be flashed, we will check the firmware version and compare against a JSON file (which will need to be updated depending any time Particle updates their firmware). If the device firmware is older, it will just grab the correct firmware updates from a bin folder that you will need to keep in sync with Particle's releases.
This isn't super ideal but it will make sure that the firmware is only updated when you actually want it to.
For the local compile work -- this shouldn't be too hard to implement but it's the lowest priority on our list. I think all you'd really need to do is pipe the request body from
/v1/binary into a compiler and keep a copy of the most recent firmware on disk.
If you want to make a PR for this, we'd love the extra help.