The long and the short of composting is dependent on how much work and time you want to put into your compost, and how fast you want to get finished compost out. For most people looking for a low-maintenance way to feed their gardens, cool composting will probably be the answer. This is a three-moth-minimum project during which the plant materials are slowly broken down.
If you want compost in two weeks, you're going to want to do hot composting, which literally raises the internal temperature of the compost pile by getting extra air in there. These piles have to be turned frequently and require much more checking and regulation. But you also get usable compost really quickly, if you need to pump up your fall beds for peas and root veggies.
To read up on the rest of the composting process, check out this PDF from Purdue with everything you could ever want to know about composting at home. See related PDF
Don't have a yard? Get composting pickup
It doesn't get much easier than Earth Mama Compost with a pickup service that takes your household food waste and turns it into the nutritious soil our urban gardens need. This is also a great solution for those of you living in high rises. Check out how to sign up at earthmamacompost.com.