Flarum Forum Software is a really cool open source project that makes Forums fun again. One look at the official website, and you’ll know this is a project to keep your eyes on. The design is really slick, with an attention grabbing Ubuntu like orange color with easy on the eyes color palette choices. Flarum is the creation of software developers Toby Zerner and Franz Liedke. Their take on forum software is that it is ready for a new take with a fresh start. Judging from the initial versions of the software, it looks like they are right on track. Let’s check out a little bit more about Flarum Forum Software now.
Flarum Has Experienced Developers
The Core Team of Flarum is made up of Toby Zerner, Franz Liedke, Dominion, and Daniël Klabbers. With their combination of skills in modern development, along with past experience creating and maintaining popular open source forum software such as esoTalk and FluxBB, you can be confident that this project has experience on it’s side.
The Goals of Flarum
Keep It Simple
Keep It Fun
Keep It Free!
Flarum Uses Familiar Technology
Flarum Is Packed To The Gills With Powerful Features
Flarum is fully responsive right out of the box, not an add on after the fact. The slick user interface has been optimized for touch devices by way of big buttons, friendly animations, and easy on the eyes color palettes.
Fast & Lightweight
If you’ve ever installed WordPress, you have enough skill to install Flarum. Fill out a few fields, then click Install. Now go grab a beer, or coffee if you like.
A great feature is that even though Flarum is build with a next generation framework like Laravel, it has a plugin or extensible based architecture. This allows you to extend the platform with thing like BBCode, Emoji, Likes, Markdown, Mentions, Pusher integration, and much more.
When you choose an open source platform to power your web application, it is always nice to add your own look. It’s no wonder the Themes business is so massive. Flarum makes it super easy to customize how everything looks with color scheming, and Less preprocessing, which makes large sweeping changes easy.
If you like to use social networks like Google Plus, Twitter, or Facebook, then you are used to friendly notifications that alert you of an update, mention, or like. Flarum has notification features baked right in.
Tags are one of the best ways to organize large collections of data with ease. Organize your discussions easily in Flarum with tags.
Replies & Mentions
In addition to the old school forum reply we have all come to be familiar with, in Flarum you can also post mentions to help discussions have an even better flow.
Permission control is often tricky to implement on your own. Flarum has permissions on a granular scale, allowing you to decide who can view the forum, discussions, sign up, rename discussions, and so on. You can even assign permissions on a tag level, for the highest control.
Rule number one with a discussion forum is to search first before you make a new post. Someone else may have already covered your topic. Flarum has search built in so you can find relevant posts, users, and discussions quickly.
Level Up your discussions with awesome real time interaction via Pusher. See new posts and discussions appear on the page in real time as they happen, so cool!
Search Engine Optimization
You say Tomato, I say Potato. Speaking different languages is not a problem thanks to Localization and translation.
Need to pin an important discussion? Block a user? Lock a discussion? You can do all of the needed administrative tasks via build in moderation tools.
Flarum has an awesome live preview system with support for BBCode, Markdown, and Emoji, so you can see your message before you hit publish.
To be fair, at the time of this writing, this is what is available now. Coming soon will be more incredible features such as single sign on, WordPress Integration, Extension Marketplace, Forum Import tools, Reputation and Award system, statistics, private discussions, and much more. This looks to be very exciting!
Using Flarum To Learn
- Flarum’s core package is built on some of Laravel’s components (each in version 5.0 currently) – most notably, the database component, so that we can use Eloquent.
- For other Laravel components, we try to only couple ourselves to the interfaces in the illuminate/contracts repository.
- Our standalone app (the flarum/flarum repository) then requires some of the other Laravel components for concrete implementations of these contracts. It does take some shortcuts to boost performance, though, so it’s not a full Laravel installation.
- This structure means that you will be able to integrate Flarum in an existing Laravel app by requiring the flarum/core package (and maybe another integration package) and loading some service providers.
This is a neat approach, and in fact it does not only apply to Laravel. Flarum also makes use of Symfony and Zend Framework components as well. It seems the developers are choosing the best of the best to integrate into Flarum. Reading the documentation is a good place to start to understand how it all fits together, and the meaning of Core, Bundled Extensions, and Third Party Extensions.
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Flarum Forum Software Summary
Flarum is definitely one of the open source projects to keep your eyes on. In my eyes, it is striving to be easy to use for new comers and non technical people – which is critical to overall adoption. At the same time, when you dig into the source code and design philosophies powering Flarum, it is clear that the developers are making use of the best of the best of what is available in open source today. This keeps us tech junkies happy as well. It’s a win win for all. Go check out Flarum today!