Archaeology is still a young discipline. It flourishes on new advances in technology. The picture of our past is constantly changing. ‘The future of the past’ looks forward to the shape of archaeology from this point onwards. It is possible that most of the big discoveries of the future will come from chance findings. There will probably be a decline in research excavations. New techniques might increase our ability to ‘see’ beneath the ground; a result of the need to study existing excavated material that remains unanalysed; and partly due to the need to conserve what already exists.