Mix of Tags and Categories functionality – not sure how to proceed!
I'm almost done setting up my new forum (Vanilla 2.1), but there's one thing left which I haven't found how to do. I'll use an example, to explain.
Let's say I have this category hierarchy:
What I wish is for users to only be able to pick a category from the lowest levels when they create a discussion – so, in this case, it'd be Kiwi, Orange, Carrot, Peas and Meat. This is easily achievable by making the root categories display as headings (I could place Meat into a parent category).
But then, I'd like users to only be able to browse the _top _ categories, so Fruits, Vegetables and Meat... selecting one of those would display all of the posts from the sub-categories, with the ability to hide one of them. So, in the Fruits page, I would see discussions marked as belonging to either Kiwi or Orange, and I could filter them to display only Oranges. Basically, this behaviour is closer to how tags work, but I don't want user to be able to set tags; I want them to pick from the exiting options. (The other reason why tags wouldn't work is that users would be able to use the 'Peas' tag for a discussion in the Fruits category.)
The homepage would display only the top categories (Fruits, Vegetables, Meat), allowing the user to pick the page to go to. Ideally you'd also have the most recent discussions displayed under each one, but that's not absolutely necessary.
I haven't been able to come up with a way to do this, but maybe there is one. How would I be able to achieve to what I want, or something close?