About ‘ideas’ via Knuth and Keller

29 November 2009

A few days ago I read the following Keller quote on my iGoogle.com homepage.

College isn’t the place to go for ideas. — Helen Keller (01880-01968)

A day later I received a tweet that contained a hyperlink to a Knuth related webpage that included the following quote.

I have always liked the concept of universities as they were
in Ancient Greece, where folks who had something cool to say
would just come and say it. It wasn’t about recognition; the
impetus was the thought that you were resonating with ideas.

— Donald Knuth (01938-)

Does Knuth’s quote lend credence to Keller’s quote?

If modern day universities are places to go for ideas, then why would Knuth reminisce about Acient Greece?