Are "state.matrix.*" uniforms really global?

Is it known whether uniforms like state.matrix.mvp and state.material.front.specular are built-in in the GPU (Shader3 and Shader4 GPUs, specifically)?
By built-in, I mean that the OpenGL driver doesn’t need to manually upload their new value to each subsequently used shader.

Or maybe it’s just wishful thinking…

They are just uniforms, the driver updates them for you.

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