Mario Gleichmann writes about an alternate caching solution with the Spring framework instead of using the default Spring Caching module.
While its very easy to declare caching models (resp. flushing models) in a declarative (and more abstract) style with Spring Modules Caching, you sometimes may want to do it in a more programatic way due to some specific caching behaviour that’s difficult to reflect by using generic, declarative expressions. For example you may want to build a more complex cache key or decide which object to cache due to runtime conditions. In this case it may be better (and simpler) to handle caching in a more programmatic way, still treating caching as a cross cutting concern. The following solution is by far not comparable with Spring Modules Caching, yet provides a slightly different model for declaring and using a Cache. Only the core configuration and instantiation of the Cache will be managed by Spring. Caching and Flushing can be managed programmatically, giving you the full power of expressing ‘caching logic’ by the underlying language. We’ve come up with a very pragmatic solution with a declarative style for cache configuration and a more programmatic style for handling caching behaviour. As always, the usefulness of such a solution depends on the given problem space and the surrounding forces. While Spring Modules Caching allows for a more generic style for all aspects of cache confiuration and cache processing (with less code to write!) the given solution is only half-declarative (only for the configuration part) providing more power in expressing the cache processing part.
Read Mario's complete post: http://gleichmann.wordpress.com/2008/04/29/pragmatic-caching-a-simple-cache-configuration-model-for-spring/