For instance, I have a program that has a shortcut for Shift+F11, but of course on my MacBook Pro that's a volume button so I have to hit Fn+Shift+F11. Is there a way to avoid hitting the function key all the time? Not a big deal, just curious.
You may like FunctionFlip. Here is a description from it's website:
FunctionFlip's purpose is simply to disable the special features — rewind, play, mute, etc. — on the function keys. For example, if you "flip" F7, F8, and F9, those keys — only those keys — will revert back to normal F keys. Press the fn key with the special key to get the special function back. That is, the "special" and "normal" functions are flipped.