Photonic crystal (PhC) cavities made in broadband luminescent material offer attractive possibilities for flexible active devices. The luminescence enables the cavity to operate as an autonomous entity. New applications of this property are demonstrated for cavities made in the InGaAsP underetched semiconductor membrane with embedded InAs Quantum Dots that emit in the range of 1400-1600 nm. Planar photonic crystal membrane nanocavities were released from the parent chip by mechanical nanomanipulation. The released cavity particle could be bonded on an arbitrary surface, which was exploited to make a novel fiber-optic tip sensor with a PhC cavity attached to the tip. A single mode from a short cavity is shown to couple simultaneously to at least three cavity modes of a long cavity, as concluded from level anticrossing data when the small cavity was photothermally tuned. Reconfigurable and movable cavities were created by locally varying the infiltration status by liquid oil near a PhC waveguide or defect cavity. Liquid was displaced locally on a micron scale using capillary force effects or laser-induced evaporation and condensation phenomena.