(1) The heart, or central part, of something. The core of a network is its backbone. A core program would be the primary routines that serve the entire application (see kernel).|
(2) In digital electronics, it typically refers to a relatively large, general-purpose logic function that is used as a building block in a chip design. Examples are microprocessor, microcontroller and DSP cores. Cores may be developed internally, but are generally purchased from third-party intellectual property (IP) vendors. See soft core and hard core.