is it possible to display the counters using "scientific notation" as e.g.1.3e10 rather than 13000000000?
I can right click the results and display as bar etc, but sometimes I want to see the ratios of two counters and all the "0" do not really help.
Also, is there a documentation that explains the meaning of the different counters more in depth?
It's kinda sad that I have to refer to http://www.agner.org/optimize/ to figure out what may be causing the problem.
Unfortunately, scientific notation is NOT a currently available display format. The size of typical counter values has not been a problem for me. Most of their length is due to their nature as the product of a small sample count times the event's current Sample-After Value (SAV). An alternative used in past incarnations was to display the raw sample counts rather than rounded off estimates of the actual event counts. But more often I'm only concerned with the relative sizes of several adjacent counts, and if comparing adjacent values in a column, the relative placement lets me compare the significant digits even if the full width of the counts is truncated by the column width. Switching to scientific notation would shift the alignment of the numbers to match the position of the decimal point, but you might be able to derive an equivalent measure of the scale from comparing the exponents. About all I could offer you now is to file a feature request to add another output format.
Regarding event descriptions, there is a section of the online help devoted to descriptions of events on a per-architecture basis, called Reference for Processor Events. Ten different processor families are described in the current documentation, but the depth of those descriptions may be a challenge to the uninitiated. The events are described in a terse form that may not make much sense to someone not well versed in a particular architecture. There may also be some vagueness associated with the counter itself, in terms of its original purpose and how software analysts may be trying to exploit that counter to glean insights about particular architectural functions. If these resources are inadequate to answer particular questions associated with events, there's always this forum, and helpful websites such as Agner's where people who have walked this path before can leave helpful hints for those who follow. You may also glean additional details about particular events from our optimization guides, to which Agner refers.