Photonic sensors receive an increasing global attention focusing on critical applications such as the protection of the environment, the health and safety of the citizens. In this work we are concerned with sensing of gaseous environments and focus on a novel class of nanocomposite sensor materials, which are capable to react to external stimulant-agents. These interactions amend their optical properties, fact which provides the means for optical detection. An unpowered sensor device is thus formed, which is interrogated optically and remotely to provide quantitative detection of the “agent”. “Sensing-by-light” thus unfolds the emerging conceptsof “Remote-point Photonic Sensors (RPHOS)”,we review and revisit in this work. The method offers unique means for spatially localized, real-time, multivariable sensing. This “point-in-space” detection may be contrasted to opticalpath- integrating LIDAR operations. Synergy with diffractive and holographic approaches enhance detectability and offer further innovative modes of operation. The low cost of this unpowered sensor-head, the flexibility of fabrication, the capacity for parallel / multiplexed/ data transmission and the immunity to electromagnetic interference, makes this technology ideal for use in harsh and adverse environments of industrial and security applications.