Ok, I've seen enough nods in favor of doing a forum that I'm going to go ahead with it. That then brings up a couple of questions. 1) What default theme would you like. IE, what theme do you think we should start with? (just pick one, because we can always add alternatives later for those who don't like the default theme, but we need one to get started) and 2) what modifications or features do you want? IE, custom BBcodes, etc.
By default I'm going to include an anti-spam tool to keep the forums clean of spam bots and other nuisances like them. If I don't, I'll get eaten alive by spammers. It's one of the things that led me to discontinuing my original commenting system for the blog and other sections of the site. And since forums are not immune to this, I need to ensure that's available as well.
Now, as for the theme, there are quite a few available. To view each one, go here to the themes demo engine and try out each one of the themes and pick one you like. (The engine includes thumbnails in the themes list to speed up your search if you need it) I've already done this and here's my top five choices:
If none of those are to your liking, then make your own suggestions. As for when the forums are available, I will make an announcement. I don't have a specific ETA, but I will try to have them up before the end of the month. If I don't hear anything from anyone by launch time then I will pick one of those five styles I've listed above and that will be the default theme to kick things off.
So please let me know your thoughts as I'm now eager to get things going. :)