Re: How to create a forum that isn't associated with a group?
The key to streamlining the forums = groups = forums path is to remove the groups metaphor, at least for users. There are two BP metaphors that get the most user attention: profiles and forums. From profiles, people can interact with other users: friending and joining groups. From forums, people can interact with other users: reading and writing topical posts. Having groups as a separate metaphor, which is sort of like forums and sort of like profiles creates confusion.
A quick solution would be creating a separate bbpress installation, integrating it with the bp forums and deactivating the bp groups.