Lisa Hoover 0 Junior Poster

These days, lots of things happen online in a New York minute. Motrin launches a new ad campaign and moms jump on it instantly. An earthquake hits China and Twitter knows about it before CNN. It's no surprise, then, that an entire online business can go from concept to live in the span of one short weekend.

CNN is reporting today on Startup Weekend, a brief but intense 54-hour meetup of people with great Web-based business ideas and the people who can help make it happen. Startup Weekends have been taking place all over the world since 2007 and show no sign of slowing down. In fact, the folks behind the Web site are looking for people to lead new Startup Weekends in New York, San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago.

It only costs $40 plus the cost of transportation to attend (meals, a workstation, and a t-shirt are provided), a bargain when you consider the alternative of hourly consulting fees for similar professional startup advice.

Attendees say it's a rough weekend and organizers acknowledge that many people fail to finish the two-day program. Those who have are glad they did.

Don Brown, founder of Twitpay and a Starter Weekend alumni tells CNN he built "80 to 90 percent" of his popular application while attending the Atlanta, Georgia event earlier this month, and now he can turn his attention to monetizing the service.

It used to take weeks, months, or years to get online apps and services ready for primetime but now people are making it happen in a weekend. Is that a good thing, or does quicker-to-market not necessarily mean better? Tell me what you think in the comments.