This paper examines the cultural implications of the increasing speed and acceleration of technological operation and development. It takes its cue from the notion originally proposed by Ernst Jünger and later taken up by Maurice Blanchot and, more recently, Bernard Stiegler, that we are 'breaking the time barrier'. For Stiegler this is happening because 'technics is evolving faster than culture'. This paper examines the beginnings of this idea in the work of Jünger, Blanchot and others and traces its development in the work of Derrida and Stiegler, particularly in relation to the increasing power and ubiquity of digital networks. Finally it proposes that one response to this situation is to be found in the artistic avant-garde and in the concept of 'delay' originally proposed by Marcel Duchamp and taken up by Jean François Lyotard.