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Strength and forcingness of unusual-vs.-unusual's fourth suit, constructive bid

At a sectional, playing a vanilla 2/1, V against NV, I opened 1 in third seat with 

West
Axxx
Ax
10x
KQ1098
.  LHO overcalled 2NT, showing 5-5 in hearts and diamonds.  Partner held 
East
KQ9xx
Qxx
Axx
xx
.  Partner's understanding of unusual-vs.-unusual was that making the higher cue-bid was GF and showing the fourth suit (spades), so she bid 3, not being strong enough on power for a GF opposite a minimum, and without a fit agreed.  We hadn't discussed our unusual-vs.-unusual agreement beyond something like "fourth suit directly is competitive; cueing the higher of their two suits  is stronger, constructive."  After the match, we discussed this over email and found that most sources online considered the cue to be GF.  This doesn't make sense to me, as the responder can express a GF by bidding on after opener's minimum rebid of responder's or opener's suit.  It seems more useful to divide the 3 bid and the 3 bid at competitive/forcing-and-invitational+ than at non-GF/GF on information-theoretic grounds as well as practically.  How do you beyond-intermediates play?

Bidding recap: P-(P)-1-(2NT); 3S-all pass

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