Content-addressable memory (CAM) and associative memory (AM) are types of storage structures that allow searching by content as opposed to searching by address. Such memory structures are used in diverse applications ranging from branch prediction in a processor to complex pattern recognition. In this paper, we review the emerging challenges and opportunities in implementing different varieties of CAM/AM structures. Beyond-CMOS silicon and nonsilicon memory technologies hold significant promise in implementing dense, fast, and energy-efficient CAM/AM structures. We describe circuit/architecture level implementations of CAM/AM using these technologies, as well as novel applications in different domains, including informatics, text analytics, data mining, and reconfigurable computing platforms.