Various metaphors are used to explain the central role of DNA in a cell to laypersons. These include blueprint, recipe, catalogue, instruction manual etc. I even heard someone describing DNA as a 'boss' that yells orders.
Here are some interesting ones:
- An ancestral archive
- An archeological site
- A prison (retroviruses and transposons)
- A computer
- A deck of cards
- A clock
What are some useful metaphors that help to explain DNA function?