Dot - it is unfortunate if you perceive Dave & Fergie's comments as pedantic. They refer to ideas other than the ones noted in your link because these other ideas are more optimal ways to improve your (40k) performance. It doesn't seem overbearing, to me at least, for them to direct you towards other techniques that will provide better results.
FWIW, I agree completely with Dave.....the intervals as you described them are basically 'tweeners'....not hard enough to count as true sprint training but not long enough to provide a true stimulus for vo2max improvements much less for metabolic fitness.
You might point to the studies and mention how 30 second sprints improved 40k times....well, in untrained or newer athletes, almost anything will improve 40k times, even lifting weights actually. So if you are newer to riding or just returning from a layoff, then sure, you'll probably see some improvement. If you aren't though then you might just be subjecting yourself to a great deal of pain without much return for your effort.
Moreover, what these studies have failed to do is show a comparison whereby one group did the short (e.g., 30 second intervals) while another did classic 'continuous' intervals (15-30 minutes long). I'd bet more than a few quid that the latter would be superior as such intervals are especially useful at improving sustainable power and metabolic fitness....both of which are key determinants of 40k TT performance.
Mind you, there is a definite place for "on/off" type intervals as part of training as shown by micro-intervals and/or Billat's 30/30's. For instance, if you pedal continuously 15s on @ 150% FT & 15s off @ 50% FT for 20 minutes, you'd be performing training that's likely more useful for improving your sustainable power. Although to be fair, the exact effects of micro-intervals have not been studied in detail.