ASP.NET is a web application framework developed and marketed by Microsoft, that programmers can use to build dynamic web sites, web applications.
The initial prototype was called "XSP"; Guthrie explained in a 2007 interview that, "People would always ask what the X stood for. At the time it really didn't stand for anything. XML started with that; XSLT started with that. Everything cool seemed to start with an X, so that's what we originally named it." The initial prototype of XSP was done using Java, but it was soon decided to build the new platform on top of the Common Language Runtime (CLR), as it offered an object-oriented programming environment, garbage collection and other features that were seen as desirable features that Microsoft's Component Object Model platform didn't support. Guthrie described this decision as a "huge risk", as the success of their new web development platform would be tied to the success of the CLR, which, like XSP, was still in the early stages of development, so much so that the XSP team was the first team at Microsoft to target the CLR.
With the move to the Common Language Runtime, XSP was re-implemented in C# (known internally as "Project Cool" but kept secret from the public), and renamed to ASP+, as by this point the new platform was seen as being the successor to Active Server Pages, and the intention was to provide an easy migration path for ASP developers.