Lucas Beattie

Why I Made This Website

I started putting this website together in December of last year, and published the first article on January 4th. I quickly decided I wanted to put out an article each week for a while (at least for the first half of this year), and it’s already led to some fun results. In this article, I’m going to talk about why I did it.


Extended Resume

The first reason I wanted to make this personal website/blog was just to act as a sort of extended resume or CV. When employers or peers Google me, I think it’s pretty cool and impressive looking when they find a full website. It also puts a lot of my preferences and interests front and center, so that anyone looking knows a little bit about me right away.

Daniel Meissler is a cybersecurity expert who runs a blog. One of my best friends is always sending me articles from his site. One that really drove home this “extended CV” idea for me is his post Why Everyone Needs a Blog.

Thought Refinement

The act of writing can let us iron out and clarify our thoughts. Often the ideas and opinions we hold are a jumbled mess, and we don’t take the time or attention to sort through them. Creating an article about a topic really forces you to clear ambiguities and mold your ideas into a coherent whole, which then increases your confidence in those ideas, or even in your identity.

I used to enjoy writing in high school when it was a required part of the curriculum, but efforts to journal or to just write for myself always fizzled out quickly. I wondered if I didn’t really enjoy writing anymore. However, as soon as I clicked that publish button, I got excited and motivated. Putting your thoughts and interests into the world give fuel to that thought clarifying process, and it also provides a feedback avenue for further refinement.

Luck and Serendipity


The above reasons were core motivations for creating a website, but the ideas that really got me over the hump and ready to post an article are those centered on luck and serendipity.

Jason Roberts is a tech entrepreneur who coined the term “Luck Surface Area” on his blog back in 2010. The idea is that opportunities are flying around everywhere, but you need some luck to catch one. However, we can increase the “surface area” of our opportunity catcher (luck) by doing things we’re passionate about, and telling people about those things. This idea is fleshed out a little further in this post: Luck Surface Area: How to Get Lucky In Life (Without Being Rich).

I encountered a similar idea while watching Ali Abdaal’s YouTube video How Writing Online Made me a Millionaire. Although I definitely don’t expect this website to make me a millionaire, this video was a turning point for me in deciding this website was something I wanted to put out in the world. He goes over several ideas that resonate with me, including clarifying your thinking, having a greater network effect, and showing your work, but my favorite one is probably the point about publishing content acting as a “serendipity vehicle.”

This idea came from David Perell, and, similar to the luck surface area concept, it emphasizes finding opportunities you can’t anticipate. When you put out content that lets others know what you’re passionate about, you connect with people with similar interests and they have ideas and knowledge around those things that are different from yours.

For an example, I know my super detailed, math-heavy posts on drilled shaft capacities aren’t going to attract a lot of readers. Of course it’s nice as an extended resume piece, but more than that, if anyone IS interested in these articles, and then contacts me about them, I know they’re likely an excellent person for me to know.

These articles have already led to some fun connections, and have done so far more quickly than I would’ve expected. I’ve met a couple of other civil engineers doing projects in Excel VBA, connected with old friends and acquaintances whose careers have turned in directions relevant to me, and have even connected with a few personal finance creators with interests similar to mine. These little serendipitous incidents constantly remind me this website was a great idea and is already paying off.

A Place to Put Cool Stuff


Finally, it’s just nice to have a place to put things up online that I think are neat. In the future, I hope to have more Excel Sheets up, and even some other software projects. It’s so much fun to have these things I’m proud of available in a format that friends, or anyone else, can look at immediately from their phones.

Other Inspirations

Here are links to a few other articles that had a hand in encouraging me to make this website.


I don’t think I will keep up this pace of posting every week forever, but I know for sure it’s something I want to do for now. This website puts pieces of my personality out in the world for others to see and allows them to either reach out with common interests, or even just know something they come across is something they should send my way. Even if I decrease the posting frequency in the future, I still plan to do cool things and to write about them, hopefully increasing my luck surface area, and leading to more and more exciting connections and opportunities.

You should make your own website too! I highly recommend it. There are so many ways to go about it these days. The way I did requires a medium amount of tinkering, and I will outline how I did it in an article called “How I Made This Website (And You Can Too)” in two weeks. There are even easier ways out there, and I’ll link to Ali Abdaal’s video on services he recommends: How To Build A Website in 2023. Have fun!