Useful Websites

Business Intel

In business, knowing what your industry is about and what your competition is doing can mean the difference between success and failure. The following free websites may “connect-the-dots” about relationships between companies; ownership and management of companies; suppliers to companies; and who sits on boards of directors with for-profit and non-profit corporations. To get the most benefit from this site, examine each person and company linked to the person or the company of interest to determine all of the relationships. For example, a non-profit corporation that raises thousands of dollars will often have its’ directors shown and their personal or professional relationships will link to the non-profit. You can determine then if one of the directors has a private interest in what the non-profit is doing. To be more specific, if the non-profit is renovating its’ building, a director could have a conflict of interest if he or she did not disclose that it is his or her company that is being contracted with to provide the scaffolding, paint, construction, concrete or architectural services for the project. This site is also useful for sales prospecting because it shows ownership interests of prospects. This is a handy site for determining if you or your family members are missing any unclaimed property in any state in the United States. However, this site is also useful in business. People will want to meet with you if they know you can either make them some money or save them some money. Before meeting with somebody, it could be useful to look up their name or their company’s name at this site to see what they might be owed them. If their name or company’s name appears on the list, very graciously show them a print out of it at the start of the meeting. You will have made it worth their time to meet with you.

Business Resources Find free downloads of online trade magazines and “white papers” about relevant business topics for various non-profit and for-profit industries. Find free access to all bankruptcy filings in Texas by court and by judge, helpful in deciding who to do business with. This site uses Intellius, a fee-based background search engine, but cell phone numbers can be searched for free; the reverse-lookup process establishes a location, provider and relatives for the cell phone user plus a history of previous locations.

A&M Resources Texas A&M University’s Image Repository is an online source of restricted-use photos which may be used by graphic designers, website developers and students on a limited and non-commercial basis. Images are managed by the Division of Marketing & Communications to insure uniform branding of Texas A&M University’s identity. Images may be used as long as they are reproduced by or for Texas A&M University. A link to A&M’s Visual Identity Guide and copyrighted logos is also available at this same site. Texas A&M University’s Second Life Campus is a virtual recreation of the main campus in College Station, Texas. The 3D Second Life Campus is an online teaching environment under development by the Information Technology Department in the basement of Heldenfels on campus. It is a free client application in which users may interact with each other through avatars or screen characters. Students, instructors and visitors can chat and explore real, historic and imaginary locations in Aggieland via Second Life’s virtual world at this site. Texas A&M is developing the technology for commercial applications, including how to incorporate the selling of advertising on the site.

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