file - determine file type.
man 1 file
This manual page documents version 5.04 of the file command.
file tests each argument in an attempt to classify it. There are three sets of tests, performed in this order: filesystem tests, magic tests, and language tests. The first test that succeeds causes the file type to be printed.
The type printed will usually contain one of the words text (the file contains only print‐ ing characters and a few common control characters and is probably safe to read on an ASCII terminal), executable (the file contains the result of compiling a program in a form understandable to some UNIX kernel or another), or data meaning anything else (data is usually ‘binary’ or non-printable). Exceptions are well-known file formats (core files, tar archives) that are known to contain binary data. When modifying magic files or the program itself, make sure to preserve these keywords. Users depend on knowing that all the readable files in a directory have the word ‘text’ printed. Don't do as Berkeley did and change ‘shell commands text’ to ‘shell script’.