I thought there was some magnetic RAM, MRAM on the way(years back). It would hold everything you need in the RAM, you could turn your computer off, and when you turn it back on, wham, everything is there. Instant boot.
It's called NVRAM (Non Volatile RAM) and is already a reality. Just that no OS's yet support it (though a recent interview with a Micrsoft VP noted that Longhorn would).