Ageia , founded in 2002, was a fabless semiconductor company. Ageia invented PhysX - a Physics Processing Unit chip capable of performing game physics calculations much faster than general purpose CPUs; they also licensed out the PhysX SDK (formerly NovodeX SDK), a large physics middleware library for game production.
Ageia was noted as being the first company to develop hardware designed to offload calculation of video game physics from the CPU to a separate chip. Prior to this, solutions from ATI and Nvidia had not been planned nor announced. Soon after the Ageia implementation of their PhysX processor,
Nvidia and ATI announced their own physics implementations.
On February 4, 2008, Nvidia announced that it would acquire Ageia. On February 13, 2008, the merger was finalized!-- dead link: -->
The PhysX engine is now known as Nvidia PhysX.