‘Its future’ focusses on the trends that are currently occurring in chemistry and the materials that are now moving over the horizon. These include modern fabrics and substances that might revolutionise computation. Special conceptual problems and technological opportunities are emerging as chemists’ attention turns to the nanoworld and bring computation into the heart of their research. Nanotechnology and nanoscience are finding potential applications of nanomaterials across a range of disciplines. Nanomaterials show superior light-harvesting characteristics compared to traditional silicon solar cells and have been incorporated into sensors for glucose in blood. The discovery of two-dimensional graphene and its extraordinary electronic, thermal, and optical properties are also of great interest.