'Futures' by it's very definition is something that will happen in the future. Most products you hear about like gold, oil, FTSE, corn, all have an underlying price and a price called a future. This allows you to take an opinion if the price will go up or down further on in time.
Why would you do this? Well the futures market is the most sensitive and volatile to news. Futures markets react to news in seconds and when moves are made they are fast and very directional. Futures again are contacts so you do not own the underlying shares you are just trading the price going up or down. Again you can leverage this so you can get more action for your money.
Futures are a useful market to keep an eye on as they can be an indication of what the underlying price could do. With all markets you have to be sure that you strategy and the money you want to make fit in to how this market trades.