In the real world, that means you can be driving through a remote stretch of highway and find out who won the 1960 Olympic gold medal in fencing before the next song starts playing on the radio.
But when it comes to medical tests, the scene is still best described as "hurry up and wait."
Even in our fast-paced, high-tech society, it can take several days to find out if you have the markers for cancer or a stroke. Or for that matter a deadly disease.
That leaves many patients waiting, worrying, and wondering for days or even weeks. In some cases, lives are even lost.
That's why I'm happy to report that a key U.S. research lab has developed a breakthrough medical testing device that can speed up the results of your lab tests.
It is so fast, you'll get results before you leave the doctor's office.
It's called SpinDx and it's the brain child of Sandia National Laboratories.
Sandia's "Lab on a Chip"
As its name implies, the SpinDx system uses a spinning disk inside a portable instrument - much like a CD player - to manipulate blood samples.
Researchers say it can measure a patient's white blood cell count, analyze key protein markers, and process up to 64 tests from a single sample.
And all in a few short minutes...