FPGA as a processor?

I just read an article about some research being done on University of Glasgow. Researchers placed/programmed (more than) 1000-cores on an FPGA (about FPGA). Each core is supposed to have each own dedicated memory (it is not a technical article, so not many technical details were given). According to the article:

The researchers then used the chip to process an algorithm which is central to the MPEG movie format – used in YouTube videos – at a speed of five gigabytes per second: around 20 times faster than current top-end desktop computers.

You can read the article here.