Thanks for the link. The history was very good and stated a lot of things more cogently than I have heard expressed elsewhere. I also like the discussion of the eight energies and T'ai Chi combat theory.
The description of squeeze/press energy was new to me. Talking about sticking, adhering, following, and controlling the opponent's center, rather than the limbs, was very well put. I also thought that describing T'ai Chi as producing self-defense abilities quicker than hard styles was also an interesting view point.
If you don't mind, I will post this link in answer to the post about the internal energies, and may add a few comments.
I am pretty certain that "formless" push hands is part of the Yang syllabus. As I understand it, you progress from fixed step, to moving step, to free stepping, and from fixed hand routines to free movement. Certainly during free time at Yang Zhen Duo's seminars, students have engaged in free-style push hands with each other.
My question was about a specific stepping pattern that seemed to break free of the back and forth of the normal moving-step pattern. Basically, with each movement of the four-hand sequence you either crossed stepped or stepped into a horse stance.
The theory was that you had to match the opponent's stepping to prevent having your legs exposed to a sweep, where your opponent would cross step behind you and to the side and would sweep his heel backward to uproot your heel, while striking with the hand to apply splitting energy. The whole sequence looked simple, but really neat, to use a technical term.