Intel Demonstrates Programmable 48-Core Chip

The cores aren't terribly powerful (described as being like lower-end Atom processors) but hey...it's got 48 of them, and it's programmable.

Dubbed as the "Single-chip Cloud Computer" (SCC), the 1.3-billion transistor processor one ups it's 80-core Polaris predecessor because it can run standard x86 software. So far, it has successfully booted Windows and Linux during demonstrations.

Intel Chief Technology Officer Justin Rattner explained what he envisions for the future of these superchips:

"The machine will be able of understanding the world around them much as humans do," Rattner said. "They will see and hear and probably speak and do a number of other things that resemble humanlike capabilities, and will demand as a result very (powerful) computing capability."

Speaking of powerful computing, this development comes only a couple of weeks after physicists demonstrated their first programmable quantum processor. [Intel via CNET]