News Bytes
  JULY 2009



Success is in the Planning
By MB/I's Marissa Berger

A Personalized Web Site
By Jamie Westdal of Jamie Westdal Photography

25 Free Websites for Teaching, Learning, and Business
By MB/I's Aaron Rubman


Welcome to the California Academy of Sciences’ Teacher Institute on Science and Sustainability.
See details below.


25% off professional head shots from award-winning Jamie Westdal Photography.
See details below.


We now develop iPhone applications! Contact us to discover how your business can take advantage of the high visibility of iPhone apps.
See details below.

By MB/I's Marissa Berger

Summer is here and we are seeing business people exploring the opportunities. Some want to re-structure their business to adapt to the current market; others want to start new and follow their true passion. In today's marketplace, any business endeavor involves the online world. Whether a website is needed just for informational purposes, or whether the website is the business itself, a website is needed—period.

But... not just a website... a good website. And, what makes a good website? Good planning. A website is a tricky thing to plan for.

  • It needs to be flexible so it's successful today and as the business changes... but, do you know what you will need 6 months from now?
  • It needs to be kept consistently current... but, do you have an internal system to make this happen?
  • It needs to have a return on investment... but, do you know how to track how the site is used so you can get accurate numbers?

Even simpler yet: do you know what your website should look like, what content it should have, what functions it needs to perform so you can achieve your business goals... and how much is all of this going to cost?


A Personalized Web Site

By Jamie Westdal
of Jamie Westdal Photography

There are so many web sites that it is overwhelming to try and decide the best business to hire. Web sites have become really generic because businesses are trying to design them themselves using cheap and uninteresting templates and stock photography.

I am a professional portrait photographer and have the opportunity to work for web site designers that know the difference between a generic site or a personalized site that will set your business apart from the hundreds of other sites selling the same service or product.

25 Free Websites for Teaching, Learning, and Business

By MB/I's Aaron Rubman

The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) recently compiled a list of this year’s top 25 free websites for teaching and learning.

Each site comes with a description of how it can be used by teachers or students, and while some of the sites are specifically academic, many provide online and mixed-technology solutions for anyone interested in collaborative, interactive, or long distance projects and communication. Here are just a few of their suggestions, and how they could be used in the business world...



Working with the California Academy of Sciences gave us the opportunity to make our content management system do some real heavy lifting. Using existing Cal Academy designs and templates we built a completely dynamic back end for the TISS program. The end users are presented with a suite of integrated tools, and the Academy has a powerful and adaptive tool that they can manage on their own year after year as they change the calendar of events, available classes, and supplemental activities for each progressive class of teachers.

The Teacher Institute on Science and Sustainability is a program designed to provide 3rd – 5th grade teachers with the critical tools and knowledge to inspire the next generation to protect the planet Earth.



from Jamie Westdal, of Jamie Westdal Photography

Now thru the end of August, if you say "MB/I sent me", you will receive 25% off professional head shots with Jamie Westdal Photography.

Jamie perfected her skill as a professional photographer while working in the Labor and Delivery Unit at Alta Bates Hospital in the early eighties, taking dramatic pregnancy portraits and artistically documenting the dramas of childbirth. As she dealt with the difficult lighting situations, the spontaneous events, and the human interactions of childbirth photography, Jamie mastered her unique portrait skills and sense of timing. She regards it as a tremendous honor and privilege to document one moment in the life of a family and know that she has created a keepsake that will be enjoyed from one generation to the next. jamie continues to pursue her passion today as an award winning portrait photographer in downtown Orinda.

Contact Jamie Westdal Photography at:

» 925.254.9689


» Read Jamie's article on "A Personalized Web Site"


MB/I is now developing iPhone applications!

Not sure how your business can take advantage of the high visibility of an iPhone application? Call MB/I at 925.969.9132 or email solutions@ for a complimentary consultation.

925.969.9132 | |

Brand New Sites | Re-Design/Re-Branding | E-Commerce | Content Management Systems | Custom Databases | Multimedia
...and all sorts of other web services