Thanks to Elgato you can now control your garden hose with Siri

Elgato has a whole new line of HomeKit products at IFA this week. The company teamed up with “leading suppliers” for specific home automation purposes, including a self-locking door lock, Eve Lock; a smoke detector called Eve Smoke; and a tamper-detecting window sensor called Eve Window Guard. Elgato also has a new version of Thermo, its HomeKit radiator valve, which adds touch controls and an integrated temperature display.

But my favorite new product is the Eve Aqua, which turns your hose on and off and tracks your watering activity. Elgato actually announced Aqua back in January, but it looks like it relies on a new “irrigation control” HomeKit feature in iOS 11 so that’s why it’s being reintroduced. For some reason turning a hose on and off really brings me back to my childhood. Maybe it’s because I live in the Big City now and never am allowed to turn on and off hoses anymore. Whatever the reason, I’m glad I can talk to Siri about this soon.

Price and availability is up in the air for all the products other than the new Thermo, which will be available in parts of Europe for €69.95 on September 26th.

How to set up multi-room music playback with Amazon Echo

Tips, tricks, and hacks for the tech in your life.
Amazon has finally added multi-room audio supportto its Echo devices, allowing users to simultaneously stream music over multiple speakers in their homes. It’s a long-awaited move that has been expected since the low-cost Echo Dot launched and made it feasible for people to outfit their entire homes with Amazon’s smart speaker.

The new feature will let you play audio from Amazon Music, TuneIn, iHeartRadio, and Pandora over multiple speakers today. Spotify is the glaring omission here, but Amazon says support for the streaming service and for Sirius XM is coming soon. (If you’re waiting for Apple Music support, don’t hold your breath.)

To set up multi-room audio, head to settings in the Alexa app. Scroll down until you find Audio Groups and select Multi-Room Music. The app will then prompt you to create a group, making it easier to control music playback by saying things like “Alexa play music upstairs” instead of calling out individual speakers. Once you create your groups, setup is complete.

Using multi-room audio is as simple as everything else with the Echo, just say where you want the music to play. Saying “Play Justin Timberlake” followed by the name of your group will activate the music in your desired location, and so far it’s worked flawlessly in my testing.
Now if you’re like me and you enjoy the ease of use that multi-room audio support provides — but would like to utilize it with better speakers, like Sonos for example — well you shouldn’t have to wait much longer. Amazon has also released a new API for developers that will allow companies like Sonos and Samsung to control their whole-home speaker systems with Alexa.

Sonos has been teasing this feature for nearly a year at this point, but now it looks like it won’t be the only company rolling out an integration with Amazon in the near future. Amazon is has released another API to allow third-party Alexa speakers to operate within the multi-room audio playback setup as well. At this rate, soon Alexa will be the main operator of all music in your home, and I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

Multi-room audio playback is available to Echo owners in the US, UK, and Germany on Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show devices.

Shark hunting AI-powered algorithm to begin flying over Aussie beaches

A fleet of shark spotting drones to fly over Aussie beaches from September.

SHARK wary surfers are about to get some peace of mind with a new artificially intelligent drone monitoring system set to begin patrolling Australian beaches next month.

The project is a collaboration between the Westpac and Telstra backed Little Ripper Group and a team of researchers at the University of Technology Sydney who developed an algorithm capable of using real time video footage streamed from drones to detect sharks and alert swimmers.

Professor Michael Blumenstein is the head of the School of Software in the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology at the university. He and his team have been working on the “world first shark spotting” algorithm for the past year.

In developing and refining the algorithm, the more data the better, he said. Researchers used known migration patterns, recorded sightings and first-hand drone footage filmed over popular beaches to train the SharkSpotter system to detect sharks swimming beneath the surface.

Where do sharks hang out?

At the heart of SharkSpotter is a machine learning technology known as Deep Learning which is part of a broader family of machine learning methods based on learning data representations.

“At the end of the day, AI is going to be at the centre of everything. It’s going to be the fuel that drives things forward,” Prof Blumenstein told news.com.au.

The SharkSpotter drones are due to be deployed across some of Australia’s most popular beaches next month in the hope the system can be used to save the lives and limbs of Aussie swimmers and surfers.

According to its creators, the algorithm is about 90 per cent accurate in its ability to distinguish sharks from dolphins, whales and other marine life — which is a massive increase in accuracy when compared to the human eye from planes or helicopters above.

For conservationists, it could also be the best current solution that allows sharks and surfers to coexist in the water as previous deployments of protective nets have been criticised by environmentalists for their potential to harm marine wildlife.

“That’s one of the reasons we’re so excited about it,” Prof Blumenstein said. “You don’t want to be intrusive in that environment.”

Prof Michael Blumenstein lead a team at UTS who developed the shark hunting algorithm.Source:News Limited

When it spots a shark, the drone will hover over the animal and can warn swimmers through a megaphone.

According to Dr Paul Scully-Power, a co-founder of the Little Ripper Group an emergency beacon and a life raft can even be dropped from the drone to any distressed surfers below.

The drone system allows for “a rapid response that can be done with less people,” said Prof Blumenstein. And when it comes to cost, while the drone technology, maintenance and training for staff runs into the tens of thousands of dollars, “you can really scale that up and save government and the community (money).”

There are currently 35 drones in the fleet which range in flight capacity from 15 minutes to four hours, according to the Little Ripper Group.

With a recent spate of shark attacks along Australia’s coast, such initiatives are no doubt welcome by authorities.

Australia ranked behind only the United States in the number of unprovoked shark encounters with humans last year, according to the International Shark Attack File of the University of Florida.

How sinister robot killing machines have changed the face of war

Special Weapons Observation Reconnaissance Detection Systems was the first armed robotic vehicles to see combat. (AP Photo/Mike Derer)

KILLER robots sound like the stuff of science fiction, but a future of robotic warfare is not as far off as it seems.

This week, tech genius Elon Musk made headlines when he urged the United Nations to ban killer robots before the Terminator films become a dark reality, reports The Sun.

Killer tech is nothing new though, with a vast array of robotic weapons already fit for combat.

Under the Geneva Conventions, human input is needed whenever military robots are used, since AI can’t be trusted to pull the trigger.

Calls for killer robot ban

But that hasn’t stopped the development of all sorts of terrifying killing machines designed to operate as independently as possible.

From Russia’s automated tanks to the smart turrets used on the front lines in Korea, these are the war machines which are already a reality.

GUN-SLINGING ANDROIDS

Today, the closest we have to a Terminator-style killer robot is a Russian army android called FEDOR, who can drive a car, use tools and dual-wield handguns.

The sinister-looking bot was showcased earlier this year, when Putin’s armed forces released a clip of the robot shooting two automatic pistols down a range.

Although FEDOR is designed for rescue work, engineers are keen to see whether the droid could have military uses.

But the Russian army insisted that FEDOR, who is due to be sent to space in 2021, is “not a Terminator” — and was just shown slinging guns to prove how dexterous it is.

Meet FEDOR, Russia’s dual-wielding android soldier who can drive cars, use tools and shoot pistols IMAGE: ROBERTO LEONES MASINISource:YouTube

SMART SENTRY GUNS
One of the most advanced war robots in the world is the Super aegis II, a sentry gun capable of locking on to vehicles or humans from 3km away.

The smart turret can be completely automated, although all models are currently set up to make sure the gun can’t fire without human approval.

But the smart gun can still use its thermal imaging camera to find targets in the dead of night and regardless of the weather.

It sounds like something out of science-fiction, but the Super aegis II is already in use in the UAE, Abu Dhabi, Qatar and the Korean Demilitarised Zone.

PATROL ROBOTS

Robots are already used in security patrols and bomb disposal missions in warzones all over the world.

Special Weapons Observation Reconnaissance Detection System (SWORDS) is one of these bots, and is essentially a remotely-controlled weapons platform capable of moving over any terrain.

The advanced version of SWORDS, the Modular Advanced Armed Robotic System (MAARS) is currently being developed by defence giant Qinetiq.

It comes armed with a machine gun and grenade launchers, and is designed to provide foot patrols with an extra punch or be deployed to stand guard and record its surroundings.

Drones can be used for targeted assassinations and disrupting radar signals.Source:AAP

AUTONOMOUS DRONES

Remote-controlled drones, also known as UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), have been used extensively to track down and strike targets from above.

However, the latest leaps in drone technology cut out the human operator entirely, with autonomous drones already in the skies.

Earlier this year, the US military unveiled a swarm of tiny, intelligent micro-drones, which can be dropped from fighter jets.

In footage released by the Department of Defence, a cloud of over 103 autonomous drones, designed for surveillance, was released into the sky.

It is believed that the drones, which are capable of working together and acting as a swarm, could have other potential uses, including targeted assassinations and disrupting radar signals.

UNMANNED TANKS

Another cutting-edge Russian warbot comes in the form of unmanned tanks.

The killing machines work in similar ways to remote controlled patrol robots, but pack all the punch of a regular tank.

Kalashnikov Concern, the arms company behind the infamous AK-47 rifle, has developed a smart unmanned tank, called the BAS-01G Soratnik.

The 7-tonne vehicle comes armed with a machine gun and up to eight antitank missiles, and can even operate with a degree of autonomy, independently of its human controllers.

Clover Moore’s $11m cloud art crisis

THE cost of Lord Mayor Clover Moore’s signature art project — a massive metal “Cloud Arch” set to tower over Town Hall — has nearly quadrupled in price.

It’s been revealed the controversial project will now cost ratepayers $11.3 million — a massive blow out on the original $3.5 million price tag when Japanese artist Junya Ishigami was commissioned to build the monument.

The fiasco is a huge blow to Ms Moore, who staked her reputation on the art work and wanted it to be a physical legacy of her time in power.

The original design of the Cloud Arch from 2014.Source:Supplied

The Cloud Arch

The Cloud Arch design has also been dramatically altered.

The original wobbly arch has been scrapped in favour of a much more plain version.

Its height has been significantly slashed from about 75m to 58m, with Ms Moore’s City of Sydney blaming major technical constraints.

These issues have been long forecast by critics of the project like Liberal Councillor Christine Forster.

The archway is due to straddle the light rail being built on George St.

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore.Source:AAP

City of Sydney’s new look Cloud Arch.Source:Supplied

It is now not expected to be created until 2019 — a huge delay on the original date.

s Moore has also given up on building the plastic “milk crate” sculpture in Belmore Park, which was due to cost ratepayers $2.5 million.

The Daily Telegraph last year revealed the project was almost certain to be scrapped.

Police and politicians raised concerns the crate could become a haven for criminals at night.

City of Sydney last night confirmed the project has been deferred, despite tens of thousand of dollars already having been poured into it.

Ms Moore defended the cost blowouts last night, telling Fairfax the Cloud Arch will “become an icon synonymous with Sydney and help raise our city’s profile on the world stage”.
She claimed the city would recoup the investment “many times over” via “hundreds of thousands of visitors who will visit Sydney to view the artwork”.

But Labor Councillor Linda Scott slammed the massive cost increase.

“The $8 million cost blowout by Lord Mayor Clover Moore for this project is significant and will inevitably mean cuts in residents’ services, less green spaces, fewer affordable housing places and delays in new city infrastructure planned for the future,” she told The Daily Telegraph.

“This has to stop. People and businesses are depending on the city to deliver — not delay.”

Western Sydney University vying for top prize in World Solar Challenge

Testing of the 2017 Solar Car in the lead-up to the opening.

A TEAM of students from Western Sydney University is set to launch what it described as its “top secret” new solar powered car to compete in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in October.

It will be the third time the university has participated in the biannual challenge, which involves a 3000km drive from Darwin to Adelaide using only solar power. The university’s latest entrant will be officially launched at a special event on the Parramatta South campus tonight.

Dubbed the UNLIMITED 2.0, the car is the work of the university’s School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics and a raft of other students who make up the Solar Car Team.

“The team have kept tight-lipped on the details of our new solar car for as long as possible, to maintain our competitive edge in the World Solar Challenge,” said Project Lead Saami Bashar.

“It is exciting to finally unveil to the wider University community, as well as all of our sponsors and supporters, the final result of all of our hard work.”

The vehicle is reminiscent of its predecessor UNLIMITED, hence the 2.0 title. The original version competed in the 2015 World Solar Challenge and crashed after a suspension failure but was hastily repaired and crossed the finishing line in tenth place out of 43 teams.

But in many ways the new edition is a bold departure from the team’s previous entry, its creators say.

Solar Car team on a testing day at Penrith Regatta Centre before the big race.Source:Supplied

The 4.58m long, 1.4m wide reincarnation has a sleek, aerodynamic and futuristic-looking design.

“Our aim this year was to build the fastest car we possibly could, to put everything we have into this car to challenge for first position,” Mr Bashar said.

“Our main design philosophy was to generate a very organic body shape. We’ve managed to eliminate the rear overhang and make the fairings much shorter and narrower, while still maintaining enough space to squeeze in the driver, mechanics and electronics.”

Grace Mitchell, the Graphics Design Lead for the team, says another departure from the previous cars was the use of paint on the exterior of UNLIMITED 2.0, compared to vinyl wrapping used in the past.

“Paint provides a much smoother surface, which allows the car to slip through the air with minimal disturbance. We are so pleased with the result of the paint job,” she said.

Solar Car team on a testing day at Penrith Regatta Centre.Source:Supplied

The 22 member Solar Car team is comprised of Western Sydney University students from the fields of Engineering, Industrial Design and Visual Communications. The students manage every aspect of the production and design of the vehicle, as well as sponsorships, marketing and the administrative elements of their involvement in the Challenge.

New Russian stealth fighter jet revealed

The Russian media likes to call the new aircraft the “Ghost” presumably because it is intended to be so stealthy it cannot be seen or detected.

RUSSIA’S very first stealth fighter jet appeared above a sea of Russian tanks and weaponry just outside the capital Moscow — a clear signal to the world that the Russian Federation is committed to expanding its military might.

The Russian Federation invited 70 countries to take part in their two-week annual International Army Games. Twenty-eight countries — all non-NATO club with the exception of Greece — competed in a wide range of categories from best field kitchen to epic, gigantic tank battles.

Russia’s latest fighter appeared at the Games in an aerial performance designed to wow the crowds. This is Russia’s first “stealth” fighter.

Su-57

Made by Sukhoi, the name for this fifth-generation single sea twin engine jet was announced as the “Su-57” on Aug. 11.

The Russian media likes to call the new aircraft the “Ghost” presumably because it is intended to be so stealthy it cannot be seen or detected.

Many aviation experts have publicly expressed reservations about whether the “Ghost” is actually very stealthy or qualifies as fifth generation. Other problems frequently cited include external weapons and an inferior outdated engine.

In the past, the aircraft has been described at events like the Paris Air Show as 4++. Based on what has been shown internationally, many believe the “Ghost” is basically the Su-35 fighter in terms of capabilities with the upgrades of some degree of stealth capabilities and AESA (active electronically scanned array) radars.

Russian media has widely lauded the Su-57.Source:Supplied

Russian media has widely lauded the Su-57 and asserted that it possesses capabilities such as the ability to be piloted remotely — as in it can be operated like a drone, not just flown by humans in the actual cockpit in the aircraft.

There have also been suggestions in Russian press that it has a maximum cruising speed of more than 2400 km/ph and that it is highly manoeuverable.

View image on Twitter

The F-35’s publicly listed top speed is 1,199 miles per hour — so if the Su-57 speed were true then it would make the Russian stealth fighter faster than the most state-of-the-art American fifth generation stealth fighter.

Russian media has also reported that the weaponry will be superior to its American counterpart. The Su-57 would supposedly carry K-77M missiles with a reported range of about 125 miles.

The Russian Ministry of Defence’s public announcement claimed the new Su-57 could outmatch the US F-22 as well as China’s Shenyang J-31.

Russia expects its next-gen supersonic “stealth” combat Su-57s jets to be operational next year.

‘DOGFIGHTS,’ IN THE SKY, TANK BATTLES BELOW

The International Army Games is a colossal event. In fact, thousands show up to watch and the games are broadcast live.

Who emerged with bragging rights as the most lethal, capable and powerful army?

Home team Russia tends to win — and this year was no exception. Kazakhstan won second place and China came in third place. Iran placed in the top 10.

This year is the 105th anniversary of the Russian Air Force.Source:Supplied

One of the most popular events is the tank biathlon which is sort of like a relay race through obstacles and firing live artillery rounds at targets. It is judged on factors like speed and accuracy. The event is BYOT (Bring Your Own Tank) or competitors could borrow Russian T-72B3 tanks to use.

While the Russian Army triumphed on land with their tanks, their air power dominated the skies above with a gigantic spectacle of strength in that terrain.

This year is the 105th anniversary of the Russian Air Force. More than 150 aircraft took to the air demonstrating Russian pilots’ skill and the power of their aircraft.

THE US SHOWS MILITARY MIGHT

The United States did not participate in the International Army Games, but Operation Ample Strike that takes place on Russia’s geographical doorstep in the Czech Republic has just kicked off and brings serious US military might to the region including B-52 and B-1 bombers.

The US military was also preparing for another big military exercise near a different Russian border. This annual Ulchi-Guardian joint military drills with South Korea has escalated tensions again with Russia’s neighbour North Korea.

Sydney motorist hasn’t paid a road toll since 2011 and says the Government has no powers to chase him for it

Bob Jarvis reckons he has found a way to avoid his road tolls. Picture: Channel 7

A SYDNEY motorist says he hasn’t paid a road toll since 2011 because he’s convinced he has found a loophole that prevents the Government from chasing him for the debt.

Retiree Bob Jarvis is so confident of his case he believes everyone else could also avoid tolls if they wanted to.

Mr Jarvis’ protest comes as Sydneysiders take on yet another toll as the M4 motorway — which links the city’s west to the CBD — begins once again charging motorists.

He claims that road tolls are basically another form of taxation which legally cannot be collected electronically.

WestConnext M4-M5 Link

Tolls have been reintroduced on Sydney’s M4.Source:istock

“You can only collect a debt in gold and silver. There’s no basket to throw money in anymore and that’s when I stopped paying them,” Mr Jarvis told Channel 7.

“I’ve already paid my road toll in petrol excise and they’re double dipping.

“Everybody could get away with it if everybody wanted to.”

However, lawyer Adam Ly wasn’t entirely convinced by Mr Jarvis’ reasoning.

“It’s really arguable if a toll is considered a tax as oppose to a fee for something that is provided to you.”

Bob Jarvis says he hasn’t paid a toll since 2011.Source:Supplied

The NSW Roads Minister said Mr Jarvis was legally required to pay his road tolls. However, they seem to have given up chasing him for the money.

The toll dodger is unperturbed and says he would welcome challenging the law,

“I want them to take me to court but they won’t because they know full well they’ll lose the case.”

Last-minute Father’s Day gadget gift guide for dads who golf and those who want to rock

Apple’s wireless earbuds, the AirPods, may be a hit with iPhone-loving dads this Father’s Day. Picture: AFP PHOTO / Josh Edelson

DON’T panic but Father’s Day is this Sunday and, if you’ve procrastinated, you’re going to need to come up with a plan and a greeting card quickly.

All dads are different — bad jokes notwithstanding — but we’ve rounded up five new gadgets that may please the man in your family.

Rod Chester reviews the Apple AirPods

The Garmin Approach S60 is a smartwatch designed for golf with a 1.2-inch touchscreen.Source:Supplied

With 41,000 courses loaded into its slender body and a 1.2-inch screen to show you exactly how far to hit the ball, this golfing watch could provide your father with close to an unfair advantage. It’s also surprisingly easy to use for a sporty device, with touchscreen selections so you don’t have to memorise what its three crowns do, and a straightforward menu system.

Its accompanying app will also let you scrutinise your golf game after you’ve played, and you can pair with an accessory called the TruSwing if you want to analyse your swing too.

On the smartwatch front, the Approach S60 will also let you change its face, customise it with widgets, record your daily step count, and deliver alerts from your phone.

One battery recharge buys you 10 hours of GPS-tracking on the golf course or 10 days as a watch.

Apple AirPods

4.5 out of 5 stars / $229 / apple.com/au

A pair of wireless AirPods may suit fathers with iPhones. Picture: AFP PHOTO/Josh EdelsonSource:AFP

If your Dad carries an iPhone, these wireless sound machines should make your shortlist. AirPods are seriously useful for three reasons. First, they connect to an iPhone seamlessly, using optical sensors and an accelerometer to detect when they’re in your ears and pair to your handset in seconds. Second, you can double-tap them to summon Siri, who can whisper sweet facts into your ear. Third, the case doubles as a battery pack, adding to their five hours of listening time per charge.

They also filter out background noise while you’re on a phone call, and you can use just one at a time. Gift-buyers should be wary of three things, though: they’re in such high demand you’ll have to find them in a store, they don’t have volume controls, and their strange appearance is polarising.

Nest Cam Outdoor

4 out of 5 stars / $319 / nest.com

The Nest Cam Outdoor camera streams video to smartphones.Source:Supplied

Nest’s outdoor camera is suited to security-minded fathers who want to monitor their front door or check on the garage when they’re away from home.

The modestly sized camera features a 130-degree wide-angle lens to capture as much as possible, a 3-megapixel high-definition resolution for clear video output, and eight infra-red LED lights to capture footage at night.

Naturally, its body is also water-resistant to withstand rain, it sits on a magnetic base and can be mounted to a wall, and you must attach it to a power point, though it comes with an extended cord that can reach back inside the home.

The camera connects to a wireless internet hotspot to stream video to your phone, though it can also send alerts when it detects movement and when it identifies a human outline.

Its built-in storage will save up to three hours of footage, though the company’s subscription Nest Aware service will let you store more footage and set particular zones for alerts.

It costs $14 a month.

Lander Moab Case

4 out of 5 stars / $60 / drboom.com.au

The Lander Moab cases uses insulation to protect the phone inside it.Source:Supplied

This slender phone case makes a big promise: to keep your phone at an optimal temperature in all seasons.

It attempts this using Thermoline insulation to ensure the Apple iPhone’s metal body is protected from both the cold and the oppressive Australian heat. It’s hard to test whether this really works with the case covering the phone but the Moab case is grip-friendly and comes with an optional lanyard to stop you dropping it.

It also features well-crafted rubber edges, and flared covers around the phone’s buttons that actually make them more comfortable to use and easier to find without looking.

Chipolo Plus

4 out of 5 stars / $40 / studiosilo.com

Chipolo Plus is a disc-shaped Bluetooth tracker.Source:Supplied

Fathers who can’t remember where they put their car keys, or even their car, may like this traceable disc that connects to Apple and Android smartphones with Bluetooth.

To track anything at all, you just physically connect this disc to it — helpfully, it can easily be connected to a set of keys or the zip of a purse or bag — download its smartphone app, and connect your phone to it using Bluetooth. If you ever lose the item, you can track it inside the app, assuming it’s within a 60m radius, or make it sound an alarm.

Alternatively, if you find your chip but not your phone, you can press its body for the phone to make a noise. Unlike other Bluetooth trackers, this has the loudest speaker on the market but, like its peers, its battery is not replaceable and will only last a year.

Mayweather and McGregor’s 8-ounce boxing gloves have started a science fight

Trash talk has been a fundamental part of the run-up to the August 26 match between undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather and Mixed Martial Arts champion Conor McGregor. A few weeks ago, Mayweather turned his attention to the weight of their fight gloves on social media. He proposed the pair battle while wearing gloves that weigh 8 ounces each, instead of the usual 10-ouncers required for their weight class, which is 154 pounds. McGregor’s response was positive (and obscenity laden), and the Nevada State Athletic Commission, which is sanctioning the bout, has granted the opponents a one-time exception to use lighter gloves. What this means, however, is a topic of much debate in the boxing community. Those 2 ounces have caused a big stir, especially in a time when the scientific data about brain injuries in sports grows more troubling.

“They’re supposed to use 10-ounce gloves,” says Larry Lovelace, president of a group called the Association of Ringside Physicians, which advocates for the safety of fighters in combat sports. “There’s not a lot of scientific research to say that’s where the cutoff should be. But, the question that I have is, why is Nevada going to go against their own regulations and rules?”

The ARP has issued a statement questioning the Nevada commission’s decision and calling for more scientific research on whether or the Commission’s glove guidelines actually benefit the fighters’ overall health during and after the match.

There is no national governing body that regulates boxing, and the rules about gloves vary from state to state. The Nevada commission’s rule NAC 467.427, section 5, subsection a states that a fighter “at 135 pounds or less must wear gloves which weigh 8 ounces during the contest or exhibition.”

Section b continues: “At more than 135 pounds must wear gloves which weigh 10 ounces during the contest or exhibition, except that an unarmed combatant weighing in at more than 135 pounds but not more than 147 pounds may wear gloves which weigh 8 ounces during the contest or exhibition if both unarmed combatants agree to wear gloves of that weight.”

McGregor and Mayweather are firmly in the territory for 10-ounce gloves.

It’s all about the hands

Boxing experts will tell you that the original intent behind sheathing boxers’ hands was to protect them from breaking. Greek gladiators used to wrap leather straps around their fists. The Marquess of Queensberry Rules, published in England in 1867 and one of the earliest recorded rulebooks on boxing, demanded gloves be “fair-sized” but didn’t specify a weight or physical dimensions.

In bareknuckle matches, headshots were relatively rare because of their potential for broken bones. As glove technology improved and the hands had more cushioning, it allowed fighters to throw harder punches and increase the percentage directed at the opponent’s face.

With no top-level organization in charge of the rules, glove practices continued to fluctuate through the first half of the 20th century, with a consensus that heavier fighters should wear bigger gloves. But there were exceptions: When a 224-pound Muhammad Ali knocked out the 215-pound Joe Frazier in the 1975 heavyweight fight known as The Thrilla in Manila, he was wearing 8-ounce gloves as agreed upon in the contract.

For the 1968 Olympics, l’Association Internationale de Boxe Amateur, an international governing body for amateur boxing, called for all weight classes to use 8-ounce gloves. The AIBA found that 10-ounce gloves offered “18 percent more protection,” than 8-ounce versions but hindered fighters’ performance too much to make the switch.

The AIBA’s current rules (PDF), which began in 1994, exclude 8-ounce gloves. Male fighters in lower weight classes use 10-ounce gloves, while heavier weight classes (starting at 69 kg or 152 pounds) use 12-ounce gloves. Women use 10-ounce gloves across the board. Amateur boxing also allows for the use of protective headgear, unlike professional fights.

A lack of sweet science

The amount of research into the effect glove weight has on fighter performance and safety is surprisingly small, even as the topic of brain injuries in sports has gained momentum in the past decade.

“When it comes to research, MMA and boxing are farther behind most of the mainstream sports,” says Jonathan Gelber, an orthopedic sports medicine doctor and ARP board member. “We don’t know what changing those glove sizes for boxers with heavier weights will do.”

One study often cited about the impact of glove size and weight comes from the University at Waterloo. The 2014 paper outlines a single experiment in which a 16-ounce boxing glove and a 4-ounce MMA-style glove hit a sensor every 1.8-seconds for about five hours and a total of 10,000 strikes each.

Researchers were testing the durability of the material inside the gloves, but the experiment also provided data about the overall impact of different glove weights. The lighter gloves were found to have a higher peak force, but a shorter overall impact duration, while the inverse was true for a heavier glove.

A lower peak force and a longer impact duration give the brain more time to deform, and that’s suspected to be a key contributing factor in CTE and other brain injuries.

“Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is a huge area of study across all contact sports right now,” says the ARP’s Lovelace. ”But, is it better to get one big punch and get knocked out as opposed to 100 little punches where each one does a little bit of damage? We don’t quite know that yet.”

ARP board member Gelber adds, “Longer fights end up having a higher number of head strikes. These sub-concussive strikes don’t necessarily cause a concussion or knockout, but they have a cumulative effect.”

The relationship between boxing gloves and brain injuries was a key point in an oft-cited paper called The Boxing Debate, which was published by the British Medical Association in 1993. The paper clearly points out the lack of evidence that gloves prevent head injuries: “The introduction of measures intended to reduce the force of blow to the head are of little practical value if the minimum force needed to sustain either chronic or acute brain damage is not known.”

A combination of variables

While Nevada’s rules mandate that gloves weigh a certain amount, there are fewer regulations to govern things like the shape of the gloves or the location of the padding. As a result, different brands of gloves typically have vastly different characteristics in terms of protection and feel.

Mayweather, for instance, typically fights in Grant gloves, which are known to have more padding around the wrist area. That makes them better for defensive fighters, of which Mayweather is regarded to be one of the best of all time.

Glove choice has been an issue in Mayweather fights before, most recently in his fight against Manny Pacquiao in 2015. Reports claimed that Mayweather was unhappy about Pacquiao’s choice of Reyes gloves, which typically use horse hair in addition to foam for padding and are known as puncher’s gloves because of their impact characteristics.

While the commission isn’t specific about all aspects of the gloves, it does outline a variety of glove safety standards that seem to have much more to do with protecting the hands than the brains of the fighters. Each fighter’s hands are wrapped in gauze under the supervision of a commission inspector before the gloves can be donned.

The inspector also has to watch the gloves be removed from their sealed packaging in pro fights and inspect the surface for irregularities. This is in an effort to prevent doctoring. In 1983, an opposing coach accused boxer Luis Resto’s trainer of removing padding from each glove before Resto’s fight with Billy Collins Jr.. Resto delivered a severe beating, and Collins suffered a career-ending torn iris. Resto and his trainer were eventually convicted on charges of assault, conspiracy, and criminal possession of a deadly weapon. They each served two-and-a-half-years in prison for the incident.

The fighter’s perspective

While two ounces may sound like a small amount of weight, Mayweather and McGregor will feel some practical effects from the lighter gloves. “The first time you get hit in a pro fight with an 8-ounce glove, it makes you reevaluate all the bad decisions you’ve made in your life,” says Alex Brenes, a former professional boxer. He was a Golden Gloves boxer, and a member of the Costa Rican national boxing team before starting a 17-fight pro career. Not only do the punches hurt more, Brenes explained, but the smaller gloves also feel different from the puncher’s perspective.

“Whenever I knocked someone out in 8-ounce gloves,” says Brenes, “I felt their bones in my hand.”

Fighters train with heavier gloves than they wear in competition in order to increase their overall muscle stamina. “If you can do 12 rounds at a good pace with 16-ounce gloves, fighting with half that weight should be no problem,” says Brenes. Some heavyweights go all the way up to 18-ounces for training.

Despite the fact that he’s 11 years older than McGregor, Mayweather may have an endurance advantage in 8-ounce gloves. Over 49 fight professional career, Mayweather has thrown an average of 39 punches per round. A 20 percent weight reduction to each glove represents a considerable reduction in work necessary to throw those strikes.

Still, it’s unclear if the lower-weight gloves will benefit either fighter from a competitive standpoint. Some analysts expect the change to help McGregor, who is more used to fighting in four-ounce MMA gloves. Others point out that Mayweather has fought most of his career in lower weight classes where 8-ounce gloves are the norm, so he’ll feel comfortable at that weight.

There does seem to be a consensus among experts, however, that lighter gloves increase the chances that one of the fighters will be knocked out before the final bell rings after 12 rounds.