Hmmm….how should I start this….Oh yes…here we go….
My name is Chris Cheatwood and I am the webmaster of ChrisTheMacGuy.com. I am 29 years old and live on the grounds of the former military base Ft. McClellan in Anniston, Alabama. I live in a new neighborhood named Summerall. The homes in Summerall started their lives back in the 1970s as duplexes to house Army Officers and their families. The homes were gutted down to just the exterior walls and the roof and totally redone as single family craftsman-style homes with the latest in design and energy efficiency. I also serve on the development’s architectural control committee. I really enjoy living where I do, very quiet and close to nature. It is not common to see deer in my backyard during the day! I also have some of the best neighbors. We meet up regularly for cookouts and pool parties.
If you are wondering where the heck Anniston, Alabama is; approximately 100 miles West of Atlanta, GA and 60 miles east of Birmingham, AL. Take a look at this map for a better perspective:
If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am a geek, and proud of it. I have been fascinated with computers and all things tech for as long as I can remember. I enjoy figuring out how stuff works and trying to get the most out of technology. My arsenal of tech gear consists of a small army of computers. Starting with my main workhorse, a 24″ Apple iMac (yes that’s right, I’m a mac guy!). I also have a 15″ Macbook Pro. Those are my main two computers I use on a daily basis. Oh, I cannot forget my iPhone 3GS; it is much a computer as any sitting on my desk. I also have a collection of older PCs that come in handy from time to time including a Dell Dimension 4100 from about 10 years ago that serves as a FreeNAS server, a similar-aged custom built (by me) PC that runs Windows XP that I use as a backup server, and a Dell laptop. Don’t use the PC that much but still mess around with them to keep my skills up. As being a geek, I am the one people in my family, home, and church come to with questions and problems. 99% percent of those are people using Windows boxes. I am working on that though, I have converted my mother and brother to the ‘other side’ when they purchased their respective macs recently.
But to get away from the hardware for a bit. I dabble with just about any area in computer technology, with my main specialties being web design and video/audio editing. I volunteer on my church’s technology team and help run the sound system and shoot video of our Sunday services, which I edit and publish to the Internet in streaming form and downloadable form via podcasts. Check them out at FBCWilliams.org.
Now, what about my education? I thought you would never ask. I graduated on May 28, 1998 from Oxford High School with an Advanced Academic Diploma with a Tech Prep Endorsement in Business and Accounting. After graduating high school, I started a 5-year journey into the world of college life. I began my college days in the Fall of 1998 at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama. Now, the majority of entering freshmen don’t have a clue what their major is going to be. I was not part of that group. From my Junior year in high school, I knew I wanted to major in Computer Science. Now some people ask me why it took me so long to finish school. I need to remind them that I was working full-time at Wal-Mart the entire time I was in school and there were plenty of times that I had to take 2 or 3 classes instead of the nominal 5 classes. On April 25, 2003, I broke the chains of education when I walked across the stage in Pete Mathews Coliseum and received my Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. I also received Special Honors in Computer Science.
When I am not enjoying my computer stuff, I am usually at work. I am the Hardlines Assistant Manager at the Walmart in Jacksonville, Alabama. I am responsible for the merchandising and operations of several departments and area, including Automotive/Tire and Lube Express, Outdoor Living, Seasonal, Toys, Sporting Goods, Stationery, and Fabric/Craft/Celebrations. I have worked for Walmart for 13 years and have been in management for over 5 years. I started out as a cart pusher at the Oxford Supercenter. I moved up to Cashier after that. I also worked at the Customer Service Desk, Layaway, Electronics, Customer Service Manager, and Accounting Office. In July 2003 I stepped into the world of Walmart management by starting the Management Training Program. The 17-week training program I went through was also done in the Oxford store. I finished the training program in November of that year and went to my first assignment as assistant manager at the Walmart in Roanoke. The Roanoke store was a very small, hometown store in a the very rural Randolph county. In fact, the Roanoke store was of the smallest Walmart stores in the state. That was changed in March 2004 when we opened the doors of the new Roanoke Supercenter. Even though that store is a supercenter it is small for a supercenter, coming in at only 112,000 square feet (the average supercenter is between 150-200,000 square feet). I worked in that store as the Apparel Assistant manager and spent six months as the overnight manager. I pulled up my roots in January 2004 and was able to relocate back to the Oxford store as an assistant manager. I remained in Oxford as an assistant for several years. In August 2007, I was ready for a change and transferred to the Jacksonville Walmart, approximately 20 miles north of Oxford. Walmart is a good company to work for. Even though I am still not using the degree that I worked so hard for, it will hopefully help me in the future. Before going into management, I was wanting to move to Walmart’s Home Office in Bentonville, Arkansas and work in their Information Systems Division (ISD). After working in the store as a member of management, plus being on my own for a couple of years now, I know I want to stay near to home. So, I will probably work my way up in the management area, which is fine for me. But you never know…I would have never dreamed I would be an Assistant Manager when I started with Walmart in March 1996.
Now about this website. Ever since I was a member of AOL and had that free members.aol.com free web space I have been messing around with web pages. I have used a variety of tools in the past including: AOL’s built in web page builder, Netscape Composer, and even Microsoft Word. I moved up to using Microsoft FrontPage for most of my web creations, but since have moved to the WordPress content management system. I do know how to code in HTML and will do it on occasion. I have also have a little bit of knowledge with JSP and PHP scripting. In fact, the TechTV Central site that I used to run (been shut down due to obvious reasons–TechTV is no more) is completely PHP and most of the content is pulled from a MySQL database. I consider myself an Intermediate-level when it comes to web design. It would be cool to be able to do this for a living, but I do this for fun and that’s the way I like it.