I like this bit from an interview with Ted Chiang:
...traditional “good vs. evil” stories follow a certain pattern: the world starts out as a good place, evil intrudes, good defeats evil, and the world goes back to being a good place. These stories are all about restoring the status quo, so they are implicitly conservative. Real science fiction stories follow a different pattern: the world starts out as a familiar place, a new discovery or invention disrupts everything, and the world is forever changed.
I really enjoyed Ted’s collection of short sci-fi stories, Exhalation, too.