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Recent advances in micro- and nanotechnology determine current trends in the field of chemical sensor technology enabling micro- and nanofabrication of device components and entire sensing systems. However, not all properties of chemical sensing systems necessarily improve with decreasing physical dimensions. Challenges of applying chemical sensors in a real-world environment are discussed and implicit consequences for scaling down chemical sensing systems to the micro- and nanoscale are derived. General aspects of miniaturized chemical sensor technology is contrasted with selected examples elucidating trends in the field of mid-infrared optical sensors and scanning probe tip integrated electrochemical sensing devices.