I had a tab open for months (no one paid it off) (no a browser tab) in the vein of ones about shaping technology (insert a Tom Woodward style footnote that goes to his blog).

What am I babbling about? It’s a way of using technology working within its abilities to shape it to do what you want, rather than you shaping your ideas to do only what the interface provides.

This all goes back to July of this year when I was pushing an H5P Food truck around in OEG Connect (trying to get some community activity going) and Alejandro asked a question:

Have you seen a way of doing a sort of “safe” where you need to enter the correct passcode to see a certain content? Like this from this Genial.ly: caja fuerte by MONTSERRAT HEVIA VALLE on Genially 1.

I thought about a Course Presentation where one slide is the safe and the next is the secret content, but I don’t think it’s possible to allow to see the next slide only if a certain content type (like fill in the blank in this case) is correct.

Maybe someone has some ideas on how to implement it.


I don’t know of anything that provides an interaction where someone enters a code and H5P can then reveal something or send you elsewhere. The idea was, I think that a learner does a series of four activities, say in a branching scenario, that completing them gives as a response some kind of special code.

Then after, you go to say a Fill in the Blank where entering the right codes reveals the “prize”, in this case, you only get one try to get it right. It kind of works, maybe not the most elegant, but, well, this is as much as I could shape.

Hint: 54 9 21 37

Sort of. There is no way to provide a hyperlink in the feedback, but a bit.ly at least does not reveal any clues in the URL. I am pretty sure that was not 100% what Alejandro wanted, but it was fun to try. That’s how shaping go, you work it as much as you can, but accept you might just have to live with some shortcomings (or try a different tool all together).

All of this comes full circle when I find a blog post from the H5P building guru, Oliver Tacke, where he has created a custom H5P content type that is designed as this kind of combination lock. Here is one of the many reasons I Love H5P– you wont find this tool on the main site or in any building interface. But you can get the full functionality bu downloading his H5P source file and then importing it into any H5P editor.

I did exactly that to bring it into the H5P Kitchen back room, where I then modified it to fit my needs. Here is a different take on the safe.

Hint: 5 9 2 3

Still, it’s only text feedback, but It Does The Job. And there are plenty of options in Oliver’s tool to change how it works.

It’s “safe” to be shaping technology! Better than it shaping/limiting you.

Featured Image: It’s Safe With Me flickr photo by cogdogblog shared into the public domain using Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication (CC0) modified by adding a translucent H5P logo to the knob

A numbered dial on the front of an old style metal bank safe, with an H5P logo superimposed on the knob
[media description: A numbered dial on the front of an old style metal bank safe, with an H5P logo superimposed on the knob]
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An early 90s builder of web stuff and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person. And he is 100% into the Fediverse (or tells himself so) Tooting as @cogdog@cosocial.ca

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