The main reason Flat-File Forum, or FFF, was created was honestly out of boredom. As development progressed, it became a hobby and turned into quite a nice script. I then decided to release it as open-source, in hopes that people would use it, or help make it better. FFF is now distributed as a small, easy-to-install alternative to large database-driven forums. All data is stored in a single file, supporting multiple tables and infinitely recursive message replies. For more information on the development, please check the status
page. If you are looking for a demo of the script at work, head on over to the demo
The internals of the systems are quite primitive, and the format of the data files are limiting in several factors, but allow for an easy-to-use system that works without the need of a database. The only (very limiting) factor presently is the speed of such an approach. The script as it stands is currently too slow to be used for anything except the smallest of tables, and will ultimately time out on many machines. Rest assured I'm (we're?) working on it, and maybe one day the script will be at least fast enough to use on larger web sites.