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To me, the difference between "23 exabytes every 7 days" and "5 exabytes every 3 days" is pretty irrelevant.

I think a better quote would be "By 2003, mankind had generated a shitload of information. Now we generate a shitload every day."

Exactly, the entire point of the quote was to get across the absurd magnitude of growth that we're seeing in a way that anybody can understand.

If you care enough about numbers and can figure out how to say it more accurately... more power to you I guess? Doesn't change the effectiveness of the quote though.

Using shitload as a unit of data: sarcasm or serious?

It's not a unit, it's a magnitude or count. Used in similar situations as "a lot". It's neither 'sarcastic' nor 'serious', but rather 'casual'.

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