Physical and chemical functions of organisms are carried out by a very large number (billions) of proteins, of differing variety (similar to 10(5) in humans), through predictable and self-sustaining interactions, developed through evolution. Using biology as a guide, in the molecular biomimetics approach we select, design, genetically tailor, synthesize, and utilize short polypeptides as molecular erectors in self-assembly, ordered organization, and biofabrication of nanoinorganic materials and molecularly hybrid systems in nanotechnology (molecular electronics, magnetics, and photonics) and nanobiotechnology (biosensors, bioassays, and biomaterials). These polypeptides are usually 7-15 amino acids long, and are obtained via combinatorial biology using cell surface or phage display libraries. Once selected, the inorganic binding polypeptides can be further engineered using genetic engineering to tailor their properties for specific material surfaces, morphologies, and crystal chemistries, and for designed applications. The potential of engineered polypeptides in nanotechnology is enormous due to molecular recognition, self- and co-assembly, and manipulation via DNA technologies.