GIMP has a very different interface from Photoshop, and some people scratch their heads over its workflow. But generally speaking, GIMP is a lot simpler to use. It’s also free to download, and the software is regularly updated. GIMP has come along way since its clunky inception, and more and more Photoshop users are making the switch, or even cutting their teeth with this zero-cost alternative.
Proprietary software on the other hand tends to use a different business model, where a customer of the proprietary application pays a fee for a license to legally access and use it. This license may grant the customer the ability to configure some or no parts of the software themselves. Often some level of support is included in the purchase of proprietary software, but additional support services (especially for enterprise applications) are usually available for an additional fee. Some proprietary software vendors will also customize software for a fee.
Gale is an e-research tool offered by Cengage Learning. It's designed mainly for schools and educational research, but can be quite helpful in generating sales lead lists as well. Gale publishes over 600 databases, both in hard copy and online. These databases include both business information and collections of articles on various subjects. The article lists are particularly useful when you're collecting lists of publications related to your industry.