Active Server Pages (ASP) is a "server-side" scripting environment that you can use to create and run dynamic, interactive Web server applications. With ASP, you can combine HTML pages, script commands, and COM components (including ActiveX controls) to create interactive Web pages or powerful Web-based applications, which are easy to develop and modify.
From which perspective are you approaching ASP?
The Active Server Pages Model
A server-side script begins to run when a browser requests an .asp file from your Web server. Your Web server then processes the requested file from top to bottom, executes any script commands, and sends a Web page to the browser.
Server-side scripts cannot be readily copied because only the result of the script is returned to the browser. Users cannot view the script commands that created the page they are viewing.
If you develop back-end Web applications in a programming language, such as Visual Basic, C++, or Java, you will find ASP a flexible way to quickly create Web applications. Besides adding scripts to create an engaging HTML interface for your application, you can build your own COM components. You can encapsulate your application's business logic into reusable modules that you can call from a script, from another component, or from another program.
Because your scripts run on the server rather than on the client, your Web server does all the work involved in generating the HTML pages sent to browsers. This means that Web Developers no longer need to be so concerned about whether visitors to their pages have scripting options turned on, or Browser specific problems such as unsupported features. For Example, Taltech's ActiveX control can be used with Client side scripting, but if you try to view the page with Netscape (which does not support ActiveX controls unless a special "Plugin" is installed) you will not be able to see or use the control. However, by using Server Side Scripting to manipulate the control and inserting the barocde into the Web Page as a graphic file, this is no longer an issue.