According to Mark Smith, Nvidia's senior technical evangelist, Nvidia engineers have been "embedded at Valve" to assist the company's development of SteamOS. Their work includes improving OpenGL performance, and optimizing overall performance for Nvidia graphics cards. Nvidia also helped Valve to port the Source engine to Linux and reduce input lag in SteamOS.
Nvidia's work with Valve appears to be part of an overall push at the graphics company to increase support for Linux.
"The collaboration makes sense as both companies strongly believe in the importance of open-platform innovation, and both companies are committed to providing gamers with a cutting-edge visual experience," said Smith.