Many building blocks of living organisms are nanoscale in dimension. Their size enables them to undergo Brownian motion and self-assemble into complex hierarchical materials. Furthermore, the energy for the construction of these materials is drawn from ambient thermal energy, which makes cellular machinery reach energy efficiencies of 89-95%. One can poses a question: can some parts of such materials and machinery be reproduced using abiotic, inorganic building blocks? The current body of knowledge accumulated for inorganic nanoscale particles leads to a definite “yes” for some and definite “no” for some others. We have dedicated our research efforts to understanding where the dividing line between these answers is.