Data Files are collectibles scattered around the surface of PNF-404 in Pikmin 3. They appear as glowing yellow SD Cards that float in place and are fairly common. Once one has been uncovered, it will show up on the Gamepad screen, and can later be checked by looking at the Exploration Notes menu. There are 120 Data Files in all. Most are either stated or shown to be left by Olimar, but some are about things that Olimar was not aware of, possibly meaning that they could represent notes written by the three playable characters.
It is through Data Files that Alph, Brittany, and Charlie gain understanding of the Pikmin and the world they come from. Data Files, when collected, provide various hints and bits of information of various topics. They are also used by Olimar to try to contact anyone else who may be on the planet.
Data Files are organized in 6 categories, which can be found in the Exploration Notes menu. These categories are.