People resist change, whether it's automation, the Internet of Things, Big Data, or any other innovation. 

Sometimes they are right to worry about the loss of privacy and the changes to social interaction entailed by things like Facebook or Big Data. But many of the things which were regarded as 'newfangled' in 1999, when Adams wrote this article, are now part of the furniture of our lives, scarcely noticed - just as he predicted. 

One example is chatting with people via text messaging, which was still weird in 1999, but is now completely normal.

Currently, there are still workplaces where things that could be automated are done manually - like parts of the order-to-cash process. But in another decade or two, automated data processing will be just part of the furniture.

This classic article by Douglas Adams still has relevance today.